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Managing Editor  | July 2017

Article gives tips for joining of thermoplastic composites

A recent article in the latest Assembly Magazine included thoughts and tips from industry experts on the challenging process of joining thermoplastic composites, whether to each other or to another material, such as fillers that give those plastics strength, stiffness, and heat resistance.



The article outlined some of the challenges in joining thermoplastic composites.
(Wikimedia Commons)


The article’s author, John Sprovieri, explored different types of welding operations, including ultrasonic welding, vibration welding, and laser welding. Each of these techniques comes with its own set of challenges and considerations, such as the recommendation that the weld bead should be “wider and taller than normal” to ensure full material strength.


The article added, “If the plastic parts must be disassembled, engineers have little choice but to use threaded fasteners for assembly. Fortunately, numerous screws have been designed specifically for fastening plastics, and the presence of glass fibers or other fillers isn’t much of an issue.”


Sprovieri also looks at threaded inserts and the increasingly common use of carbon fiber-reinforced plastic, for which one expert said that there are still no “standard guidelines.”


“One challenge with installing fasteners in CFRP,” Sprovieri explained, “is galvanic corrosion, so engineers should carefully choose the fastener material, plating and coating.”


Read the full article at http://www.assemblymag.com/articles/93873-assembling-thermoplastic-composites and learn more about assembling thermoplastic composites. 

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