Get to the Heart of the Process with In-Situ Temperature Sensors
The effectiveness of a cure process depends on ensuring that the whole part sees the required temperatures -- from root to tip, front to back and top to bottom. Unfortunately, finding a method to accurately gauge center temperatures has been difficult using traditional techniques. In fact, the most common method, thermocouples, are only used at the outermost edge of the part (in the trim actually),because the wires are unacceptably large flaws in the finished product. and introduce a potential site of vacuum leakage
To solve the measurement problem, Advanced Processing Technology (AvPro) has partnered with Thermal Solutions Inc. (TSI) to develop a next generation of composite cure temperature sensors: The ThermoPulse™ system. A revolutionary in-situ measurement tool, the system allows for wireless monitoring of temperature from the interior of a composite part or repair.
The ThermoPulse system consists of an antenna with transmit and receive capabilities, an embeddable microwire temperature sensor and a reader box, which collects the antenna readings. Each component fills an important role in delivering reliable, remote temperature measurements from any location in the composite cure.
An innovative cure measurement tool, the ThermoPulse Microwire offers real-time temperature feedback from within a composite interior or even repair bond line. The in-situ microwire temperature sensors are permanently embedded at critical zones within the repair or composite before the cure process begins. Throughout the cure, the microwire supplies temperature response data to the controller and provides assurance that performance-critical parts are actually reaching required temperatures.
Measuring just 0.25mm by 32mm, ThermoPulse sensors are small enough to be included in fly away part. Earlier studies with American and European companies showed no significant difference in mechanical properties between samples created with sensors and those without.
ThermoPulse can be a major component of AvPro's Material State Management ™ (MSM) solution for composites processing, providing part interior and bond line temperatures which, used with other AvPro products, help operators and engineers gain critical visibility as to the effects of a cure process on the part itself.