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Impact Damage and Injection Repair Strength Restoration



Impact damage to composite structures can lead to a range of damage modes. Of interest is modest damage composed of delaminations less than 50 mm in size, and no visible impact-side fiber breakage. While resin injection is a current-practice repair technique that can be used to address these damage modes in a manner that is much less invasive than bonded scarf patch repair, the injection technique is not currently credited as one restoring strength back to laminate. Issues of quantifying the removal of any internal contamination, assessing degree of resin fill, and demonstration of how much strength is restored are being addressed within the scope of this research activity. Resin injection will be conducted and the resulting strength restoration assessed in local fracture tests (end-notch flexure). The formation of actual impact damage morphologies, namely multiple planes of delamination interconnected with matrix cracks, is a critical aspect of this problem. Three 25-ply composite panel types having varying percentage of 0o fiber content have been impacted under low velocity at a range of energy levels. Resulting force vs. time and ultrasonic mapping of damage extent. Damage produced by such impacts will be used in subsequent injection repair studies. Intentional contamination will be introduced, and then removal will be achieved via injected solvents and atmospheric plasma, with monitoring of contaminant presence achieved by in-line quantitative chemical analysis.


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