Manufacturing AUTOMATION

NRC and Fives create automated inspection machine for manufacturing composite parts

January 15, 2019
By Manufacturing AUTOMATION

This Fives Viper Automated Fiber Placement machine

January 15, 2019 – The National Research Council (NRC) and Fives, an industrial engineering group, have partnered to develop a machine that will improve the efficiency of manufacturing composite parts for the aerospace industry using automation.

The companies are developing an advanced profilometer called the Fives Automated Fibre Placement Machine that will provide faster and more accurate part inspection using an innovative form of optical technology.

This in-process inspection technology will help manufacturers meet strict standards by providing superior measuring information without limiting the process functionality. The NRC says that faster, better measurements will speed up manufacturing processes, reduce the risk of errors, and help composite manufacturers be more competitive.

Fives has already started the last testing stage of the next-generation profilometer with customers and expects to begin commercializing the technology before the end of 2019. 


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Fives designs and supplies machines, process equipment and production lines for various industrial sectors, and is a major supplier of composite manufacturing equipment to the aerospace industry. The engineering group employs close to 8,700 people in about thirty countries, mainly in Canada, the United States, and Europe.

Manufacturing makes up nearly half of Canada’s aerospace sector. Canada is home to more than 700 aerospace companies employing over 85,000 skilled professionals. The aerospace industry contributed $12.6 billion to Canadian gross domestic product (GDP) in 2017.

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