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Composite profiles

Units for composite profiles manufacture



What is a composite profile?

Composite profile is a profile consisting of two or more strips or profiles connected to each other pointwise, for example, by means of laser welding. The components can be of different thickness or even made of different materials.


Why is a composite profile?

Composite materials have been increasingly used in the aerospace industry with the primary goal, that is reduction of the aircraft weight. A combination of different materials and different thicknesses of sheet metal, helps to achieve:

    • Reduction of material costs
    • Reduction of reconfiguration and changeover time
    • Ease of use of easily replicable devices

Example 1: Reduction of material costs

All profiles had the same thickness until recently. Composite profile can be thinner in areas of smaller tension and slightly thicker in areas with more tension, saving up to 30 % of materials while maintaining strength of the horizontal axis.


Example 2: Reduction of reconfiguration and changeover time

Roller forming tools for production of complex-shaped profiles should always be checked for a length as their reconfiguration and re-adjustment takes much time. The design complexity is reduced substantially in the process of composite profiles manufacture. For example, a lap connection may be replaced by a flat connection, reducing the number of forming points by 50 %. The time for check and re-installing is reduced correspondingly.


Example 3: Ease of use of easily changeable devices

Perforated blanks are often deformed during the forming process or can cause deformation of a profile or its shape. These problems are simplified in the process of composite profile manufacture. All perforating and bending operations are performed on a flat blank. Produced functional elements do not take part in the forming process and are welded to the main profile. As a result certain elements of a composite profile are made without any deformation occurring during perforation or forming of a profile.

Possible combinations of materials:

    • Fine-grained steel and ordinary carbon steel
    • Ordinary carbon steel and hardened steel
    • Stainless steel and galvanized steel
    • Austenitic steel and ferritic steel

Structure of a production line

Roller forming of a basic profile

Welding of profile components

          Final profile forming


© Anton Ohlert 2012
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