Airbus participates in OASIS as an End-user of the aeronautical sector providing its expertise and capabilities to develop alternative composite repair/curing methods based on a resistance heating process. Buckypaper (BP) (CNT enabled product) is used as a flexible heating element to directly heat the composite part through resistive heating – with no limitation of size and shape. This heating system can be applied externally or integrated into the structure (as the last ply), thereby avoiding the heating of the complete composite part. The system has the capability to directly bond precured panels, or to simultaneously cure fresh prepreg whilst bonding adhesive layers to precured panels.
The partnership between Airbus and OASIS service providers consists of the collaboration between several different partners:
- Tecnalia is responsible for the manufacturing of BP heaters to provide a uniform performance according to the required specifications.
- In collaboration with TMBK Partners Sp, the BPs are encapsulated using flexible materials (including polymeric veils), to protect and electrically isolate them for external heating systems.
- Adamant Composites is focused on the encapsulation of the BP for the integrated heating system.
- The University of Patras is responsible for the characterisation of test panels manufactured by the BP based heating system. Additional simulation activities are carried out to optimize the heating performances.
You can read more about the results of this Showcase here – Showcase#5 App note.