NetComposites
Airtech

Reflexive Composite Aerostructures Identify and Heal Damage in Flight

19 November 2007

Cornerstone Research Group (CRG) has developed bio-inspired, reflexive composites that allow aerostructures to heal themselves during flight.

Designed to mimic the human reflex response, reflexive composites sense structural damage, respond quickly and autonomously to the damage, and heal the area while keeping the operator informed of the healing process.

CRG teamed with Franklin Innovation and Acellent Technologies to integrate a piezoelectric-based structural health monitoring (SHM) system and an autonomous control system. The reflexive composite system is integrated with SHM to provide continuous feedback to the control system regarding the structural integrity of the composite panels. The SHM continually scans the structure looking for damage and analyzing the information by magnitude, physical size, and zone prioritization. Damage is assessed on a predetermined scale for vehicle survival. The control system works autonomously, responding to damage and informing the vehicle operator of the status.

CRG’s healable resin system has been tailored to focus on strength recovery, shape recovery, and polymer healing. Reflexive panels have demonstrated the ability to retain 90% of flexural strength and modulus after yield and subsequent healing cycle exposure.

Reflexive composites allow aerostructures to seal micro-cracks, heal delamination, and restore aerodynamic surfaces while remaining in flight.






Related / You might like...

Alvant Supports £28m Safran-Led Aircraft Landing Gear Project

Alvant has been appointed to work on a two-year, £28 million project titled Large Landing Gear of the Future, which aims to deliver a 30% weight reduction and assist the aerospace industry’s drive to reduce fuel consumption and carbon emissions.

3D Printed Drone Prototype Wins Red Dot 2018 Design Award

Hexadrone’s 3D printed Tundra prototype, manufactured by CRP Technology via laser sintering (LS) technology using Windform SP and Windform XT 2.0 carbon composite materials, has won the Red Dot Award 2018 in the drone category.

Norco Composites Invests in New Equipment

UK company Norco Composites has invested in a larger spray booth and a new cutting and kitting machine to enable the company to increase productivity in line with growing demand from its marine customers.