Platform: Textile Composites - Engineering Science and its Applications

Lead Research Organisation: University of Nottingham
Department Name: Research and Graduate Services

Abstract

In our initial Platform Grant (GR/T18578/01) - we have been extremely successful in implementing a predictive modelling strategy at the fibre and textile (reinforcement) scale. This has been complemented by an extensive experimental programme, notably in manufacture of novel fibres and degradable composites and in development and optimisation of automated carbon fibre preforming technologies. Models at fibre scale have developed understanding of degradation for medical implants, mechanics of dry and impregnated tows, and influence of thermal and chemical shrinkage on residual stresses in thermoset composites. RVE models have enabled engineering science models for textile mechanics, fluid permeability, and elastic and failure behaviour for textile composites.Given the above, we propose to implement a multi-scale modelling approach for polymer composites, encompassing models at fibre tow, unit cell (RVE), laminate and component scales. The same philosophy that we have used successfully at the RVE scale, encompassed in the TexGen schema, will be applied - encompassing the critical engineering science within a user-friendly and flexible software environment, made publicly available where commercial considerations allow. For example one crucial area where this will be applied is in yarn/tow modelling, where we need to develop a schema representing fibre arrangements, incorporating statistical information for fibre paths. This will be an essential building block in the modelling strategy, and will be the focus of one of the Research Fellows.The strategy will be underpinned by an extensive experimental programme, validating the models and developing new processing technologies for our target application areas. We do NOT aim primarily to model standard materials or processes with high technology readiness levels; rather we aim to utilise our unique modelling capabilities and understanding to develop exciting new directions. This approach will be applied across our research portfolio, concentrating on:- automated manufacturing and processing- mechanical and physical performance- medical materials- technical textiles

Publications

10 25 50

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Arbter R (2011) Experimental determination of the permeability of textiles: A benchmark exercise in Composites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing

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Endruweit A (2010) Analysis of Compressibility and Permeability of Selected 3D Woven Reinforcements in Journal of Composite Materials

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Endruweit A (2011) A model for the in-plane permeability of triaxially braided reinforcements in Composites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing

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Harrison P (2011) Rate dependent modelling of the forming behaviour of viscous textile composites in Composites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing

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Li S (2015) A composite material characterisation tool: UnitCells in Journal of Engineering Mathematics

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Lin H (2011) Modelling and Simulating Textile Structures Using TexGen in Advanced Materials Research

 
Description 1. Our textile modelling software, TexGen, has been developed to a stage where it now facilitates virtual testing, i.e.. it forms the basis for predictions of manufacturing and mechanical behaviour which are accurate enough to use instead of experiments in many cases.
2. TexGen is available as open source software (see URL below) and has been downloaded over 20000 times. This has resulted in a number of collaborations within the UK and internationally.
3. Supported by our Platform Grant we initiated a programme of simulation studies which, for the first time, demonstrated the effects of materials variability on the manufacturing process.
4. Our work on permeability characterisation resulted in international collaboration within a benchmarking exorcise, and we have initiated discussions with NPL over development of an international standard test method.
Exploitation Route As stated above TexGen has been downloaded extensively and is used by academic and industrial groups around the world. This led to collaborative research with a German textiles company, and a UK company manufacturing fabric conditioners, both of which can be attributed to their downloading of the software.
Work on permeability measurement and flow modelling underpins research and consultancy projects with industry, and most recently formed the focus of a KTP with Formax (now owned by Hexcel), a local textiles manufacturer. Our database of non-confidential permeability data has been supplied to ESI Software so that their users can use this in manufacturing process simulations.
Sectors Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Energy,Transport

URL http://texgen.sourceforge.net/index.php/Main_Page
 
Description Our TexGen textile modelling software underpins the modelling and analysis of the behaviour of textile composites and technical textiles. This open source software has now been downloaded over 20000 times and is used by academic and industrial groups around the world. This led to collaborative research with a German textiles company, and a UK company manufacturing fabric conditioners, both of which can be attributed to their downloading of the software. In both cases our predictive modelling methodology has been transferred into the company and used to design new materials and products. Work on permeability measurement and flow modelling underpins research and consultancy projects with industry, and most recently formed the focus of a KTP with Formax, a local textiles manufacturer. Specifically we have provided materials data, and they recently became the first reinforcement supplier in the world who can routinely supply permeability data to their customers. We helped them to establish a methodology to design new materials based on this knowledge, and this work is ongoing with an EngD student based at the company. In addition our database of non-confidential permeability data has been supplied to ESI Software so that their users can use this in manufacturing process simulations.
First Year Of Impact 2013
Sector Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Energy,Transport
Impact Types Economic

 
Description EPSRC - CIMComp
Amount £5,830,000 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/I033521/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 07/2011 
End 06/2016
 
Description EPSRC - LB Fellowship
Amount £384,850 (GBP)
Funding ID EP/N019040/1 
Organisation Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) 
Sector Academic/University
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2016 
End 12/2020
 
Description Industry - QinetiQ
Amount £40,000 (GBP)
Organisation Qinetiq 
Department QinetiQ (Farnborough)
Sector Private
Country United Kingdom
Start 11/2010 
End 02/2011
 
Description KTP - Formax
Amount £140,000 (GBP)
Organisation Knowledge Transfer Partnerships 
Sector Private
Country United Kingdom
Start 05/2013 
End 05/2015
 
Title TexGen 
Description TexGen models the geometric structure of textile reinforcements and technical textiles. Models can then be exported to other analysis packages including CFD (for flow, to predict permeability) and FEA (to predict textile mechanics and hence formability, and to predict composite mechanical behaviour). It was developed to a stage during our Platform Grant such that results were sufficiently accurate to be used instead of experimental tests. 
Type Of Technology Software 
Open Source License? Yes  
Impact TexGen has been downloaded by over 20000 users to date. It is used widely in academia and industry, and we have worked with several partners to transfer modelling capability. 
URL http://texgen.sourceforge.net/index.php/Main_Page