Process investigation of a liquid PA-12/carbon fibre moulding system

P. Ó Máirtín, P. McDonnell, M. T. Connor, R. Eder, C. M. Ó Brádaigh*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A new RTM-type process has been developed to process complex geometry components utilising a thermoplastic matrix. The matrix is an anionically polymerised liquid PA-12 (APLC-12) system which may be injected into a fibre preform, with polymerisation occurring in-situ. The initially low melt viscosity can be utilised to good effect for the impregnation of all types of composite fabrics, yielding fibre volume fractions as high as 60%. Large, complex-shaped components can be manufactured using low injection pressures. A melt processing system was established and a test mould was constructed. Different geometries were used to investigate the processing characteristics and residual stress build-up effects of the unreinforced PA-12, composite plates and composite sandwiches. An industrial-scale dosing/mixing unit was also designed and developed, and used to produce carbon-fibre/PA-12 laminates for measurement of mechanical properties. Mechanical properties were tested and the results obtained were found to be comparable to those obtained from commingled carbon-fibre/PA-12 laminates.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)915-923
Number of pages9
JournalComposites - Part A: Applied Science and Manufacturing
Volume32
Issue number7
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jul 2001

Keywords

  • A. Carbon fibre
  • A. Fabrics/textiles
  • A. Polymer-matrix composites (PMCs)
  • B. Mechanical properties

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