Hybrid reinforced thermoplastic composites

Lead Research Organisation: University of Bristol
Department Name: Aerospace Engineering


This project will investigate composites that combine the ease of manufacture of short fibre reinforced
injection moulded composites with the performance advantages of continuous carbon fibre reinforcement.
Currently in the aerospace sector one of the limiting factors to further the adoption of composite materials
is their cost and manufacture time. Thermoplastics offer an attractive alternative in these aspects
compared to traditional thermosetting matrix systems. Here a fundamental understanding of the design
and manufacturing process will be developed for composites which combine multiple reinforcing
technologies to suit the performance requirements. The failure mechanisms, defects and performance
prediction of the new hybrid short/continuous fibre reinforced composites will be investigated.


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Valverde M (2020) Influence of component design on features and properties in thermoplastic overmoulded composites in Composites Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing

Studentship Projects

Project Reference Relationship Related To Start End Student Name
EP/P510427/1 01/10/2016 30/09/2021
1834913 Studentship EP/P510427/1 01/10/2016 30/09/2019 Mario Valverde
Description Thermoplastic composite overmoulding is an integrated process to manufacture components with combined continuous and short fibre reinforcements. These components benefit from high intrinsic mechanical properties, geometric complexity and low production cycle times. In this project, ribbed plates were manufactured by overmoulding short-fibre CF/PPS (carbon fibre/polyphenylene sulphide) material onto continuous woven-fibre CF/PPS flat preforms. Specifically, the effects of the rib geometry and flow length on the process-induced features were investigated using optical microscopy. The bonding at the overmoulded interface was evaluated via tensile rib pull-off tests. Results indicate that both the bond strength and corresponding failure type vary with rib geometry. However, the effects of the specimen position along the flow length are only significant towards the end path. The implications of certain rib designs are discussed both qualitatively and quantitatively, based on feature development at the overmoulded interface during manufacture.
Exploitation Route Further work should focus on characterisation of the individual manufacturing stages through process simulations in order to capture the full temperature-pressure profiles. This will contribute to the development of the manufacturing knowledge and establishment of thermoplastic composite overmoulding-specific design guidelines for different material systems, mould geometries and processing parameters.
Sectors Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Manufacturing, including Industrial Biotechology

URL https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1359835X20300610?via%3Dihub
Description Under the industrial partner NDA, limited information is available regarding non-academic impact.
First Year Of Impact 2018
Sector Aerospace, Defence and Marine
Impact Types Economic