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A Vision for the Next Generation Composites

DWAYNE D. AROLA, XIASONG LI, C. LUSCOMBE, F. OHUCHI, T. OKABE, M. SALVIATO

Abstract


The field of structural composites has reached a point of stagnation. This paper describes a vision for the next generation of composites with three dimensional microstructures that are inspired by Nature. There are specific natural structural materials that exhibit unprecedented damage tolerance and incredible multi- functionality. These biological composites can provide inspiration and ignite “game changing” strategies that overcome the existing road blocks characteristic of conventional laminated systems. A multi-disciplinary program is described that is aimed at developing the next-generation of Fiber Reinforced Plastics (FRPs) through an integration of activities, including: i) an identification of microstructures that can provide the greatest potential for high specific stiffness and damage tolerant FRPs, ii) a collaborative academic-industry effort to introduce new fiber and matrix materials, with complimentary modeling, to achieve multi-functionality and manufacturability, iii) the use of multi-scale modeling to guide design of the hierarchical microstructures from the nano- to the meso-scale, and to optimize the mechanical and physical properties, and iv) a transformation in additive manufacturing processes to enable production of FRP materials with hierarchical 3D reinforcement distributions and functionally graded microstructures. The proposed efforts could transform the future design and manufacturing processes used for developing FRP components, as well as cultivate a new class of composite materials with unprecedented damage tolerance and multi-functional performance.


DOI
10.12783/asc33/25920

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