Innovations

Design data

Designing with thermoplastic composites calls for knowledge of the material properties and of the production process. Also the long term performance is usually an important factor to take into consideration. New materials frequently emerge on the market, with only limited material property data. New concepts for design and manufacturing of constructive details requires engineering data in a wide range of (also environmental) loading conditions. TPRC generates the knowledge (scientific understanding + test methodology) and accompanying quantitative data required for future thermoplastic composite designs.

Process modelling

The development of automated production processes is usually cost, time, and labor intensive. Process simulations can help to reduce these development times. Reliable simulation tools for thermoplastic composite materials are scarcely available, however. There is no consensus on material models, characterization methods and material property data. TPRC develops methods to overcome these hurdles.

Materials characterization

The topology and the behavior of the composite and its constituents define the final properties of the composite part. Additionally however, the material behavior influences the manufacturing process and vice versa, possibly leading to deviations of the part specifications. In order to understand the interrelation between material behavior and part properties on the one side and processing conditions on the other side, materials characterization plays a large role in TPRC’s activities. Next to well-known standardized test methods also dedicated in-house developed set-ups are used. Typically fibers, thermoplastic resins as well as the composite itself on different length scales are investigated.

Technology development

Thermoplastic composites part properties have a great deal to do with the actual manufacturing processes involved. Next to the development of defects like porosity and wrinkles also geometric deviations like springforward or spingback may arise in conventional processes. In order to overcome these problems and optimize the product performance TPRC is striving for constant improvement of existing processing technologies. New and innovative technologies, as e.g. tape placement, are explored and implemented.

Education

TPRC offers dedicated and tailored education on thermoplastic composites materials and technology. Education can be organized through e.g. group workshops, lectures and hands-on laboratory work or any combination. In case you have an education need within your organization then please do not hesitate to contact us.