The final product consists of two ultrasonically welded membranes made of TPU-sealed nylon fabric. Built-in valves allow for targeted inflation of the vest. The whole development results in a safe and personalized system, as light as air.
Inflatable products, so-called 'inflatables', are already a field of application that has been researched for many years, also in connection with CNC machines. However, the combination with an ultrasonic welder enables much higher speeds and stronger welds than known from previous setups.
Based on self-determined body measurements, the personal assistive product can be designed by the user. A CNC-controlled ultrasonic welding unit seals the two textiles materially cohesive. This enables individual adaptation to the user as well as demand-oriented production with minimal energy consumption.
The entire approach to the project was strongly characterized by research and exploration. In cooperation with Telsonic GmbH, a Swiss manufacturer of ultrasonic welding equipment, it was possible to design an ideal system for this purpose.
A large part of the work involved technical development. After the successful implementation of the welding device, a large number of parameters and materials had to be tested in order to achieve optimal welding results. Different welding probes and welding amplitudes were also tested. All these results were recorded in detail in the bachelor thesis. The welding of foils on a 3-axis linear system using ultrasonic also represented a milestone that had hardly been explored before, as ultrasonic welding is mainly used for spot welds.