Work Package 2

Design, synthesis and characterisation of special fibre reinforced composites

Development of new processing techniques for the fabrication of translucent (fibre reinforced) glass matrix composites with improved mechanical properties. Composite materials are fast becoming a material of choice for the petrochemical industry primarily because of their excellent resistance to aggressive chemicals. Other advantages include, low specific weight and stiffness and potential lower cost of manufacturing and materials compared with high corrosion resistant alloys. The working program will include: selection of appropriate fibres and glass matrices; characterisation of the initial materials; study of the separate stages of fabrication including sintering and hot-pressing behaviour and engineering of the fibre/matrix interfaces. These materials will be interesting for various optical applications where currently plain glasses cannot be used due to poor mechanical properties, including in transparent armour applications, petrochemical industry and glass industry.

WORK PACKAGE LEADER: IPM

Description of work

Task 2.1 Design, Manufacture, Use, Life Integrity Management for glass-fibre reinforced composites in the petrochemical industry (task leader IPM, other participants: MERL,UNIPD, ERLANGEN, NANOFORCE)

The aim of these research topics is to develop glass based composites reinforced mainly by unidirectional fibres, highly resistant to impact loading, thermal shocks and/or other severe damage environments.

Task 2.2 Carbon nanotube enhanced fibre reinforced ceramic matrix composites (task leader NANOFORCE, other participants: MERL, ERLANGEN).

The aim of these research topics is to develop glass based composites reinforced mainly by carbon nanotubes, highly resistant to impact loading, thermal shocks and/or other severe damage environments.

Task 2.3 Micromechanics of failure of fibre glass matrix composites and composite microstructure optimisation for optomechanical structures (task leader IPM, other participants: MERL, ERLANGEN, NANOFORCE).

Very rapid development of concepts applied in mechanics and micromechanics of fibre glass matrix composites, emphasis on the mechanical behaviour of composites, including coatings and layered systems should be given. An example is the synergy of toughening effects evaluation and their optimisation appear to be key aspects for acceleration of advanced structural materials development in almost all areas of applications covered by this project. The aim of this task consists in the study of micromechanics of failure of fibre glass matrix composites and composite microstructure optimisation for optomechanical structures.

Recruited researchers to be involved (ESR= early stage researcher, ER= experienced researcher):

ESR11 will study the “Design and manufacture of glass-fibre reinforced composites (for petrochemical industry)”  and will be involved mainly in T2.1 and T2.3.

ERS13 will “Experimental characterise new glass-fibre reinforced composites suitable for the petrochemical industry”  and will be involved mainly in T2.1 and T2.3.

ESR17 will “Study novel ways of glass and ceramic matrix reinforcement and processing technique” and will be involved in T2.1 and T2.2.

ER4 will investigate “Life integrity management for glass-fibre reinforced composites” and will be involved in T2.1.

Carbon nanotube (NANOFORCE)