21st Symposium: Turbomachinery Measuring
22-23 March - 2012
Conference on Thermal Energy Management
26 March - 2012
The Energy Institute training course
27-29 March - 2012
20th PIN Meeting
2 May - 2012
6th International Conference: Thermal Engineering
22-25 May - 2011
8th ECI International Conference
3-7 June - 2012
Sustainable Energy In Buildings
14-20 October - 2012
The curing of composites can be very heat-sensitive in some applications. Reporting in 'Flight International' 13-19 December 2011, Sunaero state that the use of infrared heaters can give substantial performance gains.
The equipment was originally developed to speed up polymer seal repairs in fuel systems, and is based upon the ability to match the infrared wavelength to the properties of the material being heated/cured in order to optimise the surface temperature and heat penetration depth. Sealant curing times were cut by a factor of 12 (a good example of electrically-enhanced intensification) despite maintaining surface temperatures to only about 45°C.
It is suggested by 'Flight International' that a version for carbon fibre composites may be available in mid-2012. This would eliminate the need for heating blankets that are conventionally used to ensure that curing heat penetrates the several (up to 100) plies and can be up to 10 cm thick. The blanket method has a tendency to lead to surface overheating - possibly burning the outer skin.