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Thermoplastic composite prepreg tape realizes the laying speed of thermoset plastic

Views: 36     Author: Site Editor     Publish Time: 2021-02-26      Origin: Site

Victrex, a high-performance polymer solutions provider, said that the next decisive step in the production of large structural components from thermoplastic composites used in aerospace has been achieved.

Using its enhanced automatic fiber placement (AFP) processing technology, Electroimpact, an experienced factory automation and mold solution provider, was able to increase the placement speed of thermoplastic unidirectional tape (TP UDT) to 4,000 inches per minute ( IMP). By cooperating with innovative global leaders in the field of high-performance polymer solutions, high-speed transmission can be achieved by relying on the characteristics of the company's high-performance thermoplastic composite prepreg tape.

Currently, large composite structures (such as wings and fuselage) in aerospace are actually based on thermosetting. However, the challenge with thermoset composites is that they need to be cured for a long time in an autoclave large enough to fit the structure. The autoclave is the bottleneck of production and requires a lot of energy to run.

As sustainability becomes an important driving force for the aerospace industry, original equipment manufacturers and all walks of life are not only seeking to improve the fuel efficiency of aircraft, but also seeking to improve the efficiency of the entire supply chain. For a long time, the substantial benefits provided by thermoplastic composites have been studied, which has led to more and more people using them for the manufacture of smaller parts. In addition, thermoplastic composites can be processed outside of the autoclave (OoA), so manufacturing processes have been developed to take advantage of their potential in high-speed production. The recyclability of thermoplastic composites is another major advantage.

"We know for the first time that the importance of using a variable spot size (VSS) laser to process thermoplastic UDTs at a layup speed of 4,000 IPM is that thermoplastic materials can achieve thermosetting layup speeds. These advances can help eliminate the need for autoclave curing. Thermoplastics offer major and new production capacity advantages," the relevant person explained.

By deploying a new laser heating system, Electroimpact enhances the existing AFP processing technology and has the potential to change the heat treatment process in the aerospace industry.

The relevant personnel added: "We are very happy to provide this new laser technology and use high-performance LMPAEK composites more widely to meet unmet customer needs. I am convinced that based on the continuous in-depth support at each stage of the project, advanced The high-speed production and high performance of the VICTREX AE 250 UDT will enable the production of large-scale aerospace structural components in the next few years."

Electroimpact has taken a step forward and conducted field production trials using high-performance thermoplastic composite prepreg tape. By comparing the test procedures of several different materials, it is shown that the high-performance thermoplastic composite prepreg tape shows the best performance in the production of non-porous laminates, including the most uniform fiber size and the most uniform distribution in the resin. As a result, it is possible to produce high-quality components without any additional processing steps after lamination, thereby eliminating the need for oven consolidation. For a long time, in-situ manufacturing has been considered the holy grail of aerospace composite structures.

High-performance thermoplastic composite prepreg tape: efficient production combined on-site and non-autoclave

The key to the cooperation is to optimize the joint provision of the AFP process. Compared with another polyketone UD tape used for similar applications, this product provides considerable time and energy-saving advantages in both in-situ and autoclaving (OoA) mergers. .

VICTREX AE 250 UDT is a new type of high performance thermoplastic composite prepreg tape, designed by Victrex, with typical mechanical, physical and chemical resistance of PAEK polymer series (such as PEEK), but the temperature is 40°C (104°F) ) Lower crystal melting temperature, only 305°C (581°F).

Disclaimer: This article is excerpted from an article published on the WeChat public account of China Society of Composites. It is only used for the exchange and sharing of composite materials expertise and market information, not for any commercial purposes. If any individual or organization has any questions about the authenticity and accuracy of the copyright of the article or its content, please contact us as soon as possible. We will deal with it in time.


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