FEIT Research Project Database

Robotic additive manufacturing of 3D fibre-reinforced composite structures


Project Leader: Ying Tan
Staff: Gijo Sebastian
Collaborators: Menghe Miao (CSIRO Manufacturing)
Sponsors: CSIRO
Primary Contact: Ying Tan (yingt@unimelb.edu.au)
Keywords: 3D printing; computational materials science; mathematical modelling; robotics; system identification
Disciplines: Mechanical Engineering
Domains:

Two positions are available for students interested in PhD studies at the University of Melbourne in collaboration with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) based in Geelong. The selected candidates will work in a multidisciplinary team on a project titled Robotic additive manufacturing of 3D fibre-reinforced composite structures, and will have access to laboratory facilities in both CSIRO and the University of Melbourne, with unique opportunities for collaboration and development of innovative ideas and skills.

Additive manufacturing (AM), popularly known as 3D printing, is a process of joining materials to make objects from 3D model data, line-by-line and layer-by-layer, as opposed to subtractive manufacturing methodsused in traditional machining. Despite enormous progresses made in recent years, the mechanical performance of current 3D-printed composite parts is still very poor in comparison with parts made from conventional 3D textile preforms. This project addresses the fundamental shortcomings of current 3D-printing technology by developing innovative strategies for manufacturing high-performance fibre-reinforced composite parts. The objective is to greatly expand the opportunity for 3D-printing technology so that the fibre and polymer properties can be utilised to their maxima while retaining the inherent benefits of additive manufacturing.

The students will work with a postdoctoral fellow on the project and supervisors in the University of Melbourne and CSIRO, including construction of prototype robotic additive manufacturing systems, design and optimisation of 3D composite parts, fibre path planning, sensing, actuation and advanced control strategies.

The applicants must meet the University’s English language requirements, (https://study.unimelb.edu.au/how-to-apply/english-language-requirements/graduate-english-language-requirements).

Position 1: Control strategies for robot-assisted additive manufacturing of 3D fibre-reinforced composites.

Requirements

Applicants need to have academic qualifications in either Electrical Engineering or Mechatronic Engineering. A good fundamental knowledge of control theory is needed. Some experience of implementation of control algorithms in real robotic systems is preferred.

Essential attributes
  • Experience of fundamental knowledge of feedback control systems
  • Competent in data analysis and basic statistics
  • Experience of sensors and actuators for given specifications
  • Good written and oral communication skills
  • Strong motivation, with evidence of independent research skills relevant to the project
  • Good time management
Desirable attributes
  • Experience with LaTeX, Labview and ROS is beneficial.

Position 2: Design and numerical modelling of 3D fibre-reinforced composite structures

Requirements

Applicants need to have academic qualifications in mechanical engineering, materials science, or applied physics. Good fundamental knowledge of mechanics and finite element analysis is needed. Some experience of numerical modelling is preferred.

Essential attributes
  • Knowledge of geometrical and mechanical modelling.
  • Knowledge of fibre-reinforced composite material structures and engineering.
  • Strong motivation, with evidence of independent research skills relevant to the project
  • Good written and oral communication skills
  • Good time management
Desirable attributes

Experience with engineering simulation software, such as ANSYS, ABAQUS, and etc, is beneficial.

Scholarship benefits

Successful PhD candidates will be fully funded, including an AUD30,600 per year living allowance for up to 3.5 years.

See details at: https://scholarships.unimelb.edu.au/awards/graduate-research-scholarships

About the University of Melbourne and CSIRO

The University of Melbourne is consistently ranked among the leading universities in the world, at number 1 in Australia and number 31 in the world (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2021). We are globally engaged, comprehensive, research-intensive and committed to respond to the major social, economic and environmental challenges of our time.

CSIRO is Australia’s national science research agency, have been advancing Australia with inventions and innovations that have a positive impact on people’s lives around the world.

How to apply

Interested applicants are invited to email Prof Ying Tan (yingt@unimelb.edu.au) with a CV and cover letter explaining your interest and background in the preferred project.