Kistler Instruments Ltd. - PRODUCT NEWS
New pressure and temperature sensor for composite moulding
To support new, automated resin transfer (RTM) and wet moulding composite manufacturing methods, Kistler Instruments has produced a novel, combined low pressure and high temperature sensor specifically for these applications.
For some years the aerospace industry has been using composite materials to save weight without compromising strength but now the automotive industry is rapidly catching up in the quest for lower fuel consumption and emissions. Unlike the aerospace sector where a relatively few, large items can be produced by expensive, labour intensive methods, the automotive sector needs to produce large quantities of much smaller components cost effectively.
The techniques used for high volume composite production demand monitoring and control similar to conventional injection moulding to ensure consistent, high quality output. With its long experience of developing systems and components for the injection moulding industry, Kistler Instruments is ideally placed to provide the process monitoring systems needed by low pressure composite moulding techniques.
Much like injection moulding and other filling processes, the cavity pressure curve is a key factor in process optimization and production monitoring. Characteristic process phases such as evacuation, filling and curing can easily be identified from the pressure curve allowing process parameters to be easily optimized to make production more cost-effective.
The pressure signal can also be used as a control variable for individual process steps for online process control. Anomalies in the pressure curve show whether defects can be expected in the final part which, if out of tolerance, can be ejected. The pressure signal is also captured and recorded to allow traceability of individual process steps. For these reasons, the pressure curve is an essential tool for quality assurance. Due to the much lower cavity pressure experienced in composite moulding systems, the cavity pressure sensor needs to measure low pressure with high resolution to reliably detect even the smallest pressure or vacuum changes.
The new Type 4001A sensor meets all of these demands plus the integrated temperature element, accurate up to 275°C, monitors the temperature conditions inside the mould allowing automatic temperature compensation to correct the pressure signal due to thermal changes during the process.
The new Type 4001A low pressure and high temperature sensor is a vital addition to Kistler Instrument's range of sensors and systems specifically tailored to optimize and automate manufacturing processes, including related quality assurance requirements.
Kistler is the global leader in dynamic pressure, force, torque, and acceleration measurement. Cutting-edge technologies provide the basis for Kistler's modular systems and services.
Customers in industry, research, and development benefit from Kistler's experience as a development partner, enabling them to optimize their products and processes so as to secure sustainable competitive edge. Kistler plays a key role in the evolution of automobile production and industrial automation. Drawing on its vast application expertise and an absolute commitment to quality, Kistler drives innovations ahead in areas such as lightweight construction, vehicle safety, emission reduction, and Industry 4.0.
The Kistler Group is an independent, owner-managed Swiss corporation. Some 1 500 employees at 56 facilities worldwide are dedicated to the development of new measurement solutions, backed by individual application-specific support at the local level.
Since Kistler was founded in 1959, the company has grown hand-in-hand with its customers. In 2015, it posted revenue of GDP 231 million, about 10% of which is reinvested in innovation and research with the aim of delivering better results for every customer.
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