Radiation curing of carbon fibre reinforced plastics (CFRP)

The aim of the BMBF-funded research project (03MAI07B) was the development, construction and testing of an applicator to simplify CFRP production or repair, e.g. for automotive or aerospace applications. The applicator should be implemented in such a way that fewer process steps are required than before: no weaving, no pre-form, no lengthy curing or trimming. Rather, the roving is processed directly by spreading, impregnating the fibers, initiating the curing process and depositing it at the desired location, with appropriate orientation. This principle allows local changes of orientation and wall thickness.

The task of the GWP was to identify suitable combinations of radiation source, luminescent nanoparticles, coating, initiator and resin system for fast, volume penetrating curing. Different methods of radiation curing such as X-rays and UV radiation were used.

In addition, in-line sensor technology was developed and tested which enables the evaluation of numerous process parameters (e.g. roving thickness, width, glassiness) as well as the degree of curing in real time.