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|RAMP for 3D composites|
Arevo Labs, based in Santa Clara, California, has introduced a scalable ‘robot-based additive manufacturing platform’ – RAMP – for fabricating 3D printed composite parts.
It consists of a standard commercially available robot, composite deposition end-effector hardware and a comprehensive software suite.
It is tailored to ABB’s smallest 6-axis robot, the IRB 120, though the scalable software can support larger ABB robot models and sizes. The additive end-effector hardware consists of a deposition head with advanced thermal management technology for processing high-performance carbon-fibre reinforced thermoplastic.
CAM software converts CAD models to a set of additive deposition instructions for the robot and is capable of six degrees of freedom, enabling true 3D additive manufacturing.
RAMP interfaces with ABB’s RobotStudio programming and simulation software to ease tool path generation from CAD files.
The platform’s multi-axis toolpaths enable production quality parts constructed with true 3D surfaces in variable orientations, with strength and aesthetics superior to those made with conventional Cartesian based additive manufacturing equipment and software.
In addition to expanded design possibilities, RAMP maximises size scalability and production efficiency. Key enabling technologies include automation and secondary process integration within manufacturing work cells. Depending on the size of the robot, the part build envelope is scalable from 1,000 cubic millimetres to 8 cubic metres.
“We are excited to be the first to develop a robot based additive manufacturing platform optimized for composite parts,” said Hemant Bheda, CEO and founder of Arevo Labs. “Unencumbered by the constraints of conventional Cartesian systems, this platform is the dawn of the additive manufacturing work cell for the aerospace and defence factory-of-the-future.“