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Development of Composite Materials using Braiding Technology

Written by: Pradeep Kulshrestha

Braiding, both two-dimensional and three-dimensional, is popular in the manufacture of industrial ropes, fabrics and structures for composite application, says Pradeep Kulshrestha.

 

The technique is relatively simple and age-old, but the results are impressive.

 

Braiding is carried out in medium scale companies mostly on indigenous machines. The photograph below shows the machine from Susmatex Rope Braiding Machine at Hirpara Technical Textiles, Ahmedabad.

 

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Creeling of yarn as per planned diameter of rope on braiding machine is done:

a) To insert individual ends in needles

b) To adjust settings

c) Complete the braiding

 

There is demand for industrial ropes for the marine industry, mountain climbing, yachting ropes, parachute lines, fishing nets, mooring lines, medical applications such as catheters and for dental floss. Research is on to develop high strength ropes.

 

These are needed for heat protection and thermal resistant applications also. These ropes are being developed by technical fibres like nylon glass, aramid and dyneema.

 

Fibre glass generally consists of extremely fine glass fibres used to manufacture fabric and structural objects for composite applications.

 

Carbon fabric is generally used in applications such as brake linings, aircraft interiors, windmill blades, tooling, primary and secondary structures. Carbon fibre provides maximum stiffness in aircrafts.

 

Braiding is a method of interlacing three or more threads in such a way that they cross one another in diagonal formation. Flat, tubular and solid products may be developed in this process.

 

Some braiding machine manufacturers are:

1. Braid Solutions, Faridabad, India

2. Taiwan Braiding Machine Manufacturers, Taiwan

3. Herzog Braiding Machine, Germany

4. Karl Mayer, Germany

5. Wuxi Longterm MachineryTechnologies Co., Ltd, China

6. United Textile Machinery Corporation, USA.

 

Of these, Wuxi has a range of different machines like braiding machine, lace braiding machine, rope braiding machine, and computerised lace braiding machine.

 

Radial braiding machine:

Radial braiding machine type RF 1/128-100

  •         128 carriers

  •         Bobbin 55 x 170 x 130 mm = 265 ccm

  •         Motor power: 4 x 0,55 kw

  •         Speed: 150 r. p. m.

 

Recommended for the production of 2 1/2 D carbon fibre and glass fibre products. Special bobbins are required for braiding clock-wise and anti-clock wise.

 

2.jpg

 

Types of carbon fibre:

Significance of different carbon fibres available:

K

Tex

Denier

No. of Filaments

1

70

630

1000

3

200

1800

3000

6

400

3600

6000

12

800

7200

12000

24

1600

14400

24000

50

3300

29700

50000

 

 

Test report of some carbon fibres:

Test Parameters

Units

Test Method

Test Result (3 K)

Test Result (12 K)

Test Result

(50 K)

Single carbon fibre diameter

Micron (mm)

Projection Microscope

8.0

8.0

8.0

Single carbon fibre strength

cN

Fafegraph -M

7.98

12.0

8.05

Single carbon fibre elongation

%

Fafegraph -M

4.15

3.31

2.38

 

Selection of Aramid:

Company

DuPont Kevlar

DuPont Kevlar

DuPont Kevlar

Style

802F

745

258HPP

Product Specification

190 g/m2

450 g/m2

410 g/m2

Denier

1000

3000

3140

 

Properties of radical braiding machine:

Properties

Facilities

Improved mechanical and structural properties

2 1/2 D Radial Braiding Machine

Ability to form a variety of complex shapes

176 carriers

Manufacturing complex structural shapes

Bobbin: 76 X 80 X 280 mm

 

High torsional stability and structural integrity

Motor power: 4 X 0.55 kW

Braid high functional fibers: Aramid, Carbon, PP etc

Speed: 150 rpm

 

 

Braiding complex structures with carbon

 

3.jpg

 

Carbon braided lightweight bicycle

4.jpg

Among the various braided structures, biaxial and tri axial two dimensional (2D) braided structures have been applied in various technical sectors. Techniques to develop such structures are well developed compared to 2D braided structures while 3D braided structures contain multiple layers and are highly suitable for producing complex geometries. Cost effectiveness and capability of producing complex shapes makes braiding popular in composite applications.

 

The robotic radial braiding machine is the first of its kind in India developing automobile related composite materials.

 

Reference:

1. Advances in Braiding Technology by Yordan Kyosev

2. International Aerospace Abstracts - Volume 36 - Issue 4. 1996

3. ATIRA - Ahmedabad (Robotic Radial Braiding Machine)

4. Shanghai Henghui International Company Limited (Mainland), Shanghai

5. Exhibition at ITMA ASIA + CITME 2014, Shanghai

6. Technotex India Exhibition, Mumbai

7. Hirpara Technical Textiles Limited, Ahmedabad

 

About the author:

Pradeep Kulshrestha is an experienced professional in Textiles Operations Management. He has over 30 years of experience in administering world class manufacturing plants and project implementation.

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