The Composites Laboratory provides an environment for educational, research, and development activity in composite materials and structures. The laboratory shall to promote applied knowledge and use of composite materials and structures and provide up-to-date manufacturing and testing facilities.
The fundamental activities are processing development, specimen manufacture, preparation, inspection and monitoring, development of technical solutions, and testing. Components and specimens are produced by filament winding, vacuum infusion, or from prepreg using autoclave, vacuum hot press or vacuum bagging.
Current activities in the areas of research
- Composite joints and composite-metal interfaces
- Impact properties of composites
- Fatigue properties of multi-axial fabric laminates
- Embedded fibre optical monitoring
- Composite patch repair
- Creep rupture of uni-directional cabron fibre composites
Facilities and equipment
Filament winding machine
The Computer controlled CNC winding machine has 4 axes: spindle, horizontal carriage, cross-feed and eye rotation. The geometrical capacity is mandrel diameter > 800 mm and mandrel length > 4000 mm. A computer controlled electronic tension system with 8 tensioners is integrated.
Layup facilities for vacuum infusion
The laboratory has a central vacuum pump, vaccum distribution system and custom resin traps, precission scales, and equipments for mixing, monitoring, process control and leakage detection.
The optical backscatter reflectometer OBR 4600 from Luna Technologies enables distributed strain and temperature measurments. The optical fibre can be embedded or attached to the surface of the structure. The system is used for damage detection system development, advanced monitoring and testing.