Title: OVERMOULDING OF PEEK COMPOUNDS FOR COMPOSITE AEROSPACE BRACKETS
Abstract: Many traditional metallic aerospace structures have in recent years been substituted with laminated advanced carbon fibre reinforced thermosetting polymer composites in a bid to save weight and consequent operating costs by increasing fuel efficiency. Today, the emphasis is changing and currently there is a growing interest in the use of laminated thermoplastic carbon fibre composites, such as those based on Polyether ether ketone (PEEK) and related polymers, in order to increase manufacturing productivity and satisfy growing demands for an ever faster aircraft build rate. One area of development includes the substitution of selected metallic brackets with thermoplastic composite brackets. In this paper, we demonstrate an overmoulding technology that combines the structural rigidity of laminated thermoplastic composites based on a novel polyaromatic ether ketone polymer (PAEK) with the design flexibility and fast production speed of injection moulding that provides both weight savings and cost reductions of up to 40%. We demonstrate that overmoulding with short fibre reinforced PEEK compound onto the novel PAEK creates an excellent fusion bond between the selected compatible materials, avoiding the need for adhesives and reducing the number of mechanical fasteners when sub component parts are combined. The technology has implications for the design, manufacture and application of structural and semi-structural bracketry in modern aircraft construction. We present a case study that demonstrates the technical applicability of this manufacturing process as it pertains to advancing manufacturing technology in the aerospace sector.
Authors: Stuart Green, Frank J. Ferfecki,and Uwe Marburger
Conference: CAMX 2017 –Orlando