The thermoset and thermoplastic prepreg tape line is designed to study unique resin and fiber combinations and specific manufacturing conditions. In addition, it is an important capability to provide feedstock for other processes in the MDLab. One area of focus for this prepreg line is the study of particle infiltration into the fiber bed during impregnation.
The line typically operates at the speed of 0.5 – 1.5m/min (1.5 – 5FPM) and produces up to 75mm wide tape, with a thickness up to 1mm. The prepreg tape line is designed to process carbon, aramid, and glass fibers with any thermoplastic or thermoset resin, including high performance thermoplastics, such as PEEK. The impregnation die can be refitted to produce composite strands with a diameter up to 3mm for discontinuous fiber composites (LFT). Additionally, the resin extrusion system is designed to operate with a second melt pump to process two part resin systems.
Description of Line
The prepreg line sits in the MDLab and spans 10m. The fiber creel can hold up to 48 bobbins with adjustable tension control.
Fiber tows are spread using a fixed bar spreader with oscillating roller.
A melt pump is used to meter the thermoplastic resin flow from the single screw extruder to the impregnation die. A secondary melt pump can be added to process specialized two part resin system. (Update, remove extruder motor)
Polyamide-6 with Kevlar fiber prepreg tape exiting the impregnation die.