Measurement and Analysis of Flow in 3D Preforms for Aerospace Composites

Title: Measurement and Analysis of Flow in 3D Preforms for Aerospace Composites
Authors: Stewart, Andrew L
Date: 2012
Abstract: Composite materials have become viable alternatives to traditional engineering materials for many different product categories. Liquid transfer moulding (LTM) processes, specifically resin transfer moulding (RTM), is a cost-effective manufacturing technique for creating high performance composite parts. These parts can be tailor-made to their specific application by optimizing the properties of the textile preform. Preforms which require little or no further assembly work and are close to the shape of the final part are critical to obtaining high quality parts while simultaneously reducing labour and costs associated with other composite manufacturing techniques. One type of fabric which is well suited for near-net- shape preforms is stitched non-crimp fabrics. These fabrics offer very high in-plane strength and stiffness while also having increased resistance to delamination. Manufacturing parts from these dry preforms typically involves long-scale fluid flow through both open channels and porous fibre bundles. This thesis documents and analyzes the flow of fluid through preforms manufactured from non-crimp fabrics featuring through-thickness stitches. The objective of this research is to determine the effect of this type of stitch on the RTM injection process. All of the tests used preforms with fibre volume fractions representative of primary and secondary structural parts. A series of trials was conducted using different fibre materials, flow rates, fibre volumes fractions, and degrees of fibre consolidation. All of the trials were conducted for cases similar to RTM. Consolidation of the fibres showed improvements to both the thoroughness of the filling and to the fibre volume fraction. Experimentally determined permeability data was shown to trend well with simple models and precision of the permeability data was comparable to values presented by other authors who studied fabrics which did not feature the through-thickness stitches.
CollectionThèses, 2011 - // Theses, 2011 -
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