Composite Welding Laboratory
The Composite Welding Laboratory is devoted to the development (and promotion) of smart welding technologies for polymer composite structures. Welding is a fast, reliable, cost- and energy-efficient joining alternative for lightweight composite structures and, as such, it is regarded as a key enabler of the sustainable aircraft of the future. Smart welding makes use of in situ monitored process data to automatically adapt the process parameters as changes occur along the weld line. Given the highly transient nature of composite welding processes and hence their high sensitivity to boundary conditions, following smart welding approaches is crucial to ensure high robustness and low process development times. The research activities in the Composite Welding Laboratory focus on smart resistance, induction and ultrasonic welding technologies. These research activities are rooted on fundamental understanding of the physical phenomena occurring in the welding process and range between TRL 0 and 4. Furthermore, the Composite Welding Laboratory provides support to technology development centres and industry in the framework of collaborative research projects for developments at higher TRL. The Composite Welding Laboratory is currently the worldwide leader on static, sequential and continuous ultrasonic welding of thermoplastic composites and on welding of dissimilar polymer composite structures.