QMT News: September 2010
Aerospace composite challenge

The use of composites represent a technology shift away from metals that increasingly characterises manufacturing, particularly in the aerospace sector.  Developing expertise here is a priority. The opening of £8.2m National Composites Certification and Evaluation Facility (NCCEF) at the University of Manchester is a crucial step in this direction.

This new facility will provide expertise and evaluation techniques to support companies of all sizes in the development of new composite products and manufacturing processes. Companies such as Instron, who have  have supplied 8 of their materials testing systems, have  helped to develop world class facilities in mechanical and impact  testing. Other advanced technologies such as X-Ray Tomography, ultrasonics and shearography provide a sophisticated NDT capability.

Developing the theme of  measurement and testing of composites in aerospace manufacturing, in this month’s issue we look at how advanced laser ultrasonic systems will deliver big technical advantages for the automatic inspection of composites at Airbus (see page 11). As more aircraft utilise composites, the pressure is on to produce parts on time  that fit and are defect free. Read about some of the technologies that will make this possible.

Brendan Coyne
Editor QMT
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