Filament winding is an automated method of manufacturing composites mainly used for open (cylindrical shapes) or closed-end systems (pressure vessels or tanks). The process includes winding filaments over a rotating mandrel that fibers are wound on it with tension.

Filament winding is a computer-controlled process that accurately places the reinforcing fibers in the designated orientation.  It provides reduced labor compared to the conventional composite manufacturing methods. Filament winding also allows using of different types of materials to wind such as glass fiber, carbon fiber. The choice of the fiber material depends on the feasibility and performance requirement of the part. Carbon fiber has high stiffness and a low weight; however, glass fiber is a lower-cost alternative and could have enough strength.

Traditional hand lay-up method compared with filament winding in different aspects. Filament winding is a new and better solution for composite manufacturing.

With the filament winding technology, large variety of composite parts can manufactured efficiently. It allows to manufacture cylindrical shaped, conical shaped composite parts with high production rate and strong mechanical performance. It is very simple to manufacture small to large diameter parts by automated technology and even for diameters that vary depending on the length.

Fibers from roving are immersed in a resin bath and wet fibers are placed on the mandrel at desired orientations by the eye which is located on the carriage. The mandrel is used to refer geometrical shape of the composite part at the end of the process. After completing the ply sequences, it is cured in the oven to create a strong composite matrix with resin. End of the process, the mandrel is removed and the composite part is ready to use with the required strength.

As a result of the process;

  • High strength-to-weight-ratio from high fiber volume ratio
  • Desired fiber orientations to satisfy usage requirements
  • Lightweight and non-corrosive alternative,
  • Cost-effective manufacturing with low labor cost

are achieved with filament winding technology.

Pressure vessels, pipes, fluid tanks and driveshaft are common examples of filament wound parts. In short words, the process is a manufacturing method that combined with other fiber application methods such as hand layup, pultrusion, and braiding.

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