A team of researchers from the University of Delaware Center for Composite Materials (CCM) and the Army Research Laboratory (ARL) is credited with developing co-injection resin transfer molding (CIRTM), a process that allows single-step injection of multiple resins into a mold. The invention enables the production of multifunctional hybrid composite structures without the need for post-cure bonding of the various layers. Integral armor is an example of an application that can exploit the benefits of this technology. “With CIRTM, we can incorporate one material system for ballistic resistance, another for structure, and a third for fire, smoke, and toxicity properties,” points out Dr. John W. Gillespie Jr., CCM Director and co-inventor of CIRTM. A major advantage of CIRTM is the stronger interphase between layers due to diffusion-enhanced adhesion (DEA), another patented technology developed through Army-funded basic research at CCM several years ago. CIRTM is currently being transitioned to the Navy for fire-hardened ship structures
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