Induction Consolidation of Thermoplastic Composites Using Smart Susceptors

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This project has focused on the area of energy efficient consolidation and molding of fiber reinforced thermoplastic composite components as an energy efficient alternative to the conventional processing methods such as autoclave processing. The expanding application of composite materials in wind energy, automotive, and aerospace provides an attractive energy efficiency target for process development. The intent is to have this efficient processing along with the recyclable thermoplastic materials ready for large scale application before these high production volume levels are reached. Therefore, the process can be implemented in a timely manner to realize the maximum economic, energy, and environmental efficiencies. ... continued below

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11,355 kb

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Matsen, Marc R June 14, 2012.

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Description

This project has focused on the area of energy efficient consolidation and molding of fiber reinforced thermoplastic composite components as an energy efficient alternative to the conventional processing methods such as autoclave processing. The expanding application of composite materials in wind energy, automotive, and aerospace provides an attractive energy efficiency target for process development. The intent is to have this efficient processing along with the recyclable thermoplastic materials ready for large scale application before these high production volume levels are reached. Therefore, the process can be implemented in a timely manner to realize the maximum economic, energy, and environmental efficiencies. Under this project an increased understanding of the use of induction heating with smart susceptors applied to consolidation of thermoplastic has been achieved. This was done by the establishment of processing equipment and tooling and the subsequent demonstration of this fabrication technology by consolidating/molding of entry level components for each of the participating industrial segments, wind energy, aerospace, and automotive. This understanding adds to the nation's capability to affordably manufacture high quality lightweight high performance components from advanced recyclable composite materials in a lean and energy efficient manner. The use of induction heating with smart susceptors is a precisely controlled low energy method for the consolidation and molding of thermoplastic composites. The smart susceptor provides intrinsic thermal control based on the interaction with the magnetic field from the induction coil thereby producing highly repeatable processing. The low energy usage is enabled by the fact that only the smart susceptor surface of the tool is heated, not the entire tool. Therefore much less mass is heated resulting in significantly less required energy to consolidate/mold the desired composite components. This energy efficiency results in potential energy savings of {approx}75% as compared to autoclave processing in aerospace, {approx}63% as compared to compression molding in automotive, and {approx}42% energy savings as compared to convectively heated tools in wind energy. The ability to make parts in a rapid and controlled manner provides significant economic advantages for each of the industrial segments. These attributes were demonstrated during the processing of the demonstration components on this project.

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11,355 kb

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  • Report No.: Final Technical Report Induction Consolidation of Thermoplastic Composites Using Smart Susceptors
  • Grant Number: FG36-08GO18135
  • DOI: 10.2172/1043163 | External Link
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 1043163
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc829936

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  • June 14, 2012

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • May 19, 2016, 3:16 p.m.

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  • July 22, 2016, 4:22 p.m.

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Matsen, Marc R. Induction Consolidation of Thermoplastic Composites Using Smart Susceptors, report, June 14, 2012; United States. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc829936/: accessed September 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.