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Home > Projects > Next Generation Manufacturing Platform for Aerospace Composites (MANUCOMP)

Next Generation Manufacturing Platform for Aerospace Composites (MANUCOMP)


Aerospace components made of composites are "near-netshape" products: additional machining steps (contouring, deburring, drilling, etc.) are required to obtain the desired functionalities or assembly requirements. Due to the specification of composites (layers, fibers, stacks), these finishing operations are very difficult and expensive. To avoid this, a process stability needs to be achieved. However, most of the improvements in academic research are on subtopics: tools, coatings, machine development,…which leads to very small incremental steps. A real breakthrough can only be achieved when combining different innovative ideas on all the aspects, in an integrated way.

Project goals

The overall goal of this project is to develop an integrated platform for a cost-effective manufacturing of aerospace composites.  This will significantly reduce the production time and the production costs.

More specifically, the projects targets are:

  • Process breakthrough in the field of vibration assistance, tools and cryogenic cooling for composite machining
    • With dedicated cutting tools and coatings
  • Prototype of an integrated platform for composite machining
    • With a new clamping system guaranteeing optimal support
    • With an efficient process strategy (parameter settings, cutting strategies, force control) integrating all the factors
    • With laser scanning as an add-on method, to measure and evaluate machined features (dimensions and location)
  • High quality drilling of composites by adaptable Automatic Drilling Units with force and vibration control
  • Integrated machining platform for aerospace composite panels
    • With the integration of process, tools, clamping and cooling in one large composite machine

Economic value

The project targets economic value for the industry by:

  • Reducing machining time
  • Reducing machining costs
  • Reducing quality inspection time



Program manager:

Project manager:   

Project partners

1/02/2016 to 30/11/2018