Ultrasonic welding of thermoset materials to thermoplastic brackets through films: from flat to round samples

Brackets are small elements used as local links between aircraft structure, systems and cabin. Nowadays, most of the components of the structure are made of polymer composites, the majority of them being formed of carbon fibres reinforced thermosetting matrices. The state-of-the-art techniques for joining brackets or other small functional elements to these composite structural components are based on mechanical fastening and adhesive bonding. These joining processes are time consuming, and add significant labour and tooling costs to the assembly process, even for the attachment of such small components. Moreover, the adhesion strength achieved is often limited requiring dedicated surface treatments to be applied. An additional handicap for a strong adhesive bonding happens when the composite component is painted.

The Bracketweld project aims at contributing to the green and cost-efficient integration of systems and aircraft structures by the development of an innovative technology for the rapid assembly of thermoplastic brackets to thermosetting composite components currently used in aircraft structures. This has been done using the fast and efficient ultrasonic welding technology to assemble thermoplastic brackets to thermosetting composite structural components. As thermosetting materials cannot be welded, a thermoplastic surface media will be strongly attached to the thermosetting composite structure by a co-curing process, being this surface media used as an anchor interface for the latterly welding of the thermoplastic brackets by any fusion bonding technique, and especially by the ultrasonic welding.

The first two years of the Bracketweld project have been focused on the development of an innovative Test Method for the evaluation of different materials compatibility. The proposed welded joint combines a thermoset material with a film and a thermoplastic bracket, while the latter do not necessarily need to be the same material (because of cost or processability issues). This methodology is then the basis of the film quick down material selection ensuring a good level of adhesion with this welding method. This methodology was developed in pararell with the investigation, manufacturing and evaluation of the most appropriate surface media for the specific case under study in this project, including the formulation and development of custom surface medias at CIDAUT. Different material combinations were assessed with the Test Method.

The final year of this project has been devoted to the validation of the developed concepts. Having defined a robust and reliable test method, and chosen a film for the project use case, the validation of the methodology has been upscaled to a single curvature panel, from a machine assisted welding to a manual welding operation, and from room temperature and axial testing conditions to shear and hot/wet environments.

VALORCOMP project continues growing and launches brochure

On November 14, 2018, a new meeting of the VALORCOMP consortium was held to present the progress made within the framework of the project. The partners were kindly invited to attend the meeting at Resíduos do Nordeste facilities in Mirandela (Portugal). As usual, representatives of all partners attended the meeting: Polytechnic Institute of Bragança (IPB, Project manager), CIDAUT Foundation, University of Valladolid (UVa), Resíduos do Nordeste (RN) and Nertatec.

The main objective of the meeting was to share the progress of the work in each of the aspects of use of the compost consider in VALORCOMP project. Thus, within the thermochemical use, the participants of CIDAUT presented their results highlighting the proper compost compaction and the start of the second action of this activity, the pilot scale tests. The IPB presented its results in the context of the use of compost as a material, highlighting the applicability of this material as a catalyst in oxidation processes for wastewater treatment and the possibility of using it as a raw material to be incorporated in ceramics instead of in cements.

For its part, the UVA has obtained a product that meets specifications as a fertilizer in the study of possible agronomic use. The process includes an extraction of organic matter with potassium hydroxide. Germination trials have been conducted using the fertilizer with positive results.

In the course of the meeting, the problem of bio-stabilized residue (composted waste from non-selective collection) was discussed at length. It was focused on the difficulty of using this waste derived from the future regulation of waste reduction to landfill, as well as increasing the percentage of waste prepared for recycling into the treatment plants. Selective collection was analyzed as a solution for obtaining a compost (and not bio-stabilized residue) from the organic fraction, questioning the feasibility of executing it, the cost it would entail for the citizen and if this could guarantee the quality of the compost.

In communication and dissemination activity, it was agreed to undertake a series of actions to strengthen the content of the project’s website and create a private area to encourage communication between project partners. On the other hand, the brochure design was approved to disseminate the project.

Finally, all the partners were summoned to a next meeting in March 2019 in Valladolid.

This project is co-financed by the programme of cooperation INTERREG V-A Spain-Portugal (POCTEP) 2014-2020 and will run until September 2019. Project VALORCOMP aims to contribute cooperatively to solve cross-border problems in the valorisation of waste generated in the treatment of the organic fraction of municipal solid waste.

New non-toxic coatings for alloys in ALMAGIC project

The ALMAGIC Project (Contract No. 755515 of the Clean Sky 2 program) continues its journey.  A new meeting was held to monitor the status of the project in the facilities of Delft University of Technology in Delft (Netherlands) last 22nd of November.

During this project the partners have developed some innovative non-toxic coatings that effectively prevent aluminium and magnesium alloys from corroding. Each partner exposed the results obtained and showed some of their most successful coatings to the rest of the consortium in situ.

In the months remaining to complete the project, the validation and characterization tests of these coatings will be carried out at CIDAUT’s facilities. For more information on ALMAGIC, please visit http://www.cidaut.es/almagic-project/

CIDAUT presents Safe Strip’s midterm results at Go Mobility

Go Mobility was held in Irun, Spain on November 27th and 28th

Go Mobility has been the first industrial exhibition of Southern Europe, it has attracted 70 exhibitors and 2150 professional visitors. The exhibition has brought together representatives of the electro-mobility ecosystem. Exhibition, demonstration, conference and round table have run in parallel to attract different professional profiles from students to cities.

An initial study of the satisfaction surveys filled in by the exhibitors and visitors shows that they rated the show positively as regards both the products on display and the conferences and side events. The exhibitors expressed their satisfaction with the visitors profile and the quality and variety of Go Mobility’s side events , which have served as a forum for discussion and reflection on the challenges of future sustainability.

Safe Strip poster presented in Go Mobility

In the poster zone, Cidaut has presented Safe Strip project. In these days the project has reached its midterm, when all the use cases have been fixed and the technical solutions have been chosen. The poster showed the most important results on the sensors development and miniaturization, the communication solutions to be applied, the demonstrators to be used and the different test tracks for testing.

The profile of the people having interest on the profile is technicians experts on communication, sustainable mobility and safety.


CHEMPLAST, a great experience promoting Innovation in the plastic industry

The CHEMPLAST exhibition took place last November at Madrid, Spain. This was a twofold event, on the one hand challenges and innovations for the chemical industry, and on the other hand, the plastics industry was the focus of the attention. Cidaut had a stand at the fair and contributed actively with several presentations of the material development and processing technologies team.

Left to right: Karina Núñez, head of material development, with Juan Carlos Merino, director of Cidaut, and Maria Teresa Fernández, vice-director of Cidaut.

Three different presentations were held: Manuel Herrero, presented his work on bio polyamides and their modification with nano additives, highlighting that new materials with improved performance and reduced weight can be developed for niche applications.

Blanca Araujo focused her presentation on the challenges and new innovations in thermoplastic structural composites. There is a new generation of composite materials aiming at developing solutions for faster and more efficient manufacturing technologies, combined with improved integration through the research of joining technologies, and completed with improved performance and material functionality. In this sense, Mr. Thierry Renault, from faurecia, presented an inspiring session also on the Chemplast conference in which he reflected on the opportunities, applications and way ahead for these kinds of materials.

Blanca Araujo at the Advanced Composites conference session.

Julia Guerrero focused her presentation on pultrusion, and the opportunities that this technology may provide in the future to recycle different plastic fractions that can be reformulated to provide new market alternatives with a range of different performances depending on the reinforcements used.

Julia Guerrero at the beginning of her presentation

Besides, CIDAUT also took part moderating sessions, with Karina Núñez moderating the session of “obtaining plastic materials from renewable sources, technologies, economic aspects and new markets” in which a very interesting debate was held on the different views about the recycling plastic sector and the role bioplastics should play in it. Blanca Araujo moderated the session titled “New polymers in high technology industries”, and Esteban Cañibano moderated the session “CAD CAE tools and new design optimization”.

Finally, our director, Juan Carlos Merino delivered a presentation at the Labtech Innovation Theatre of the event, reflecting on the different perceptions of the plastics and recycling across industry sectors, highlighting the role of technology centres in fostering new innovation.

CIDAUT participates in the DESEiD’18 congress

One more year CIDAUT participates in the National Congress of R & D in Defense and Security, this year celebrated in Valladolid from November 20 to 22, 2018.

In this congress, CIDAUT exhibited its technological capabilities and presented a poster about the use of H2 in the military camp of the future, demonstrating that hydrogen is the ideal energy vector for silent applications, with a higher energy stored ratio by weight than electric batteries.

The poster presented the work carried out in the development of H2 generation in situ from diesel by reforming processes, in the scope of the REFORDI project developed with the INTA (National Institute of Aerospace Technology), reaching the construction of a 25 kW prototype.

ReFreeDrive: one year running and the first Dissemination Event

The ReFreeDrive project partners meet last September to hold the 12 month General Assembly Meeting at Pordenone, Italy. During this meeting, the three technologies featured in the project (Induction Machine, Permanent Magnet Assissted Synchronous Reluctance and Pure Synchronous Reluctance) presented their latest results and discussion over the upcoming actions and tasks took place. This first year ReFreeDrive has been focused on preliminary designs and assessments, as well as initial designs for the power electronics. In the upcoming year, designs will be finalized and the manufacturing of 8 e-Drives will take place, it will be an exciting period with many results!

The third day, a dissemination session dedicated to ReFreeDrive was held within the World Magnetic Conference, taking place in parallel to the Coiltech International Exhibition. Blanca Araujo, ReFreeDrive project Coordinator, from CIDAUT presented the project Overview. Presentations followed from other ReFreeDrive partners: the European Copper Institute (Copper use in e-mobility), the University of L’Aquila (Synchronous Reluctance Motor for Traction Applications), IFP Energies Nouvelles(Rare Earth Free PM Assisted Synchronous Reluctance Motor for Electric Vehicles), Motor Design (Adoption of the Induction Motor with Copper Rotor for e-mobility) and Centro Sviluppo Materiali (Evaluating Electrical Steels for Electric Vehicles).

The Coiltech International Exhibition was a great opportunity, as it was possible to meet many of the exhibitors working on different electrical machine parts and supplies, and explore potential collaborations for the project future activities. Besides, having a project dissemination event in parallel enabled a very enthusiastic and interested audience, full of experts in the field, and many questions on ReFreeDrive project results.

STEEL S4EV – STEEL Solutions for Safe and Smart Structures of Electric Vehicles

STEEL S4 EV is our last recently approved e-mobility project. Building from our experience in previous projects such as FP7 e-light “Advanced Structural Light-Weight Architectures for Electric Vehicles”, FP7 PLUSMOBY “Premium Low weight Urban Sustainable e-MOBilitY” or the soon to be finished FP7 Urban EV “Super Light Architectures for Safe and Affordable Urban Electric Vehicles”, STEEL S4 EV focuses on very competitive structural concepts made with high strength alloy steels. It is funded by the Research Fund for Coal and Steel (Grant Agreement-800726).

STEEL S4 EV aims at putting high strength steels at the forefront of a new trend in electric vehicles: light vehicles with three or four wheels that comply with crash regulation and with more restrictive Euro NCAP demands. Weld joint design and welding methodologies research to maintain the material properties in the weld area, assuring robustness and long term durability. Cost-effective low-investment manufacturing will be achieved by a modular and flexible structural design: a complex 3D skeleton frame of welded tubes, bent with high accuracy using programmed laser cuts will enable the production of different vehicles sharing the same tooling.

The STEEL S4 EV project was kicked off last September at CIDAUT premises. The Consortium is coordinated by CIDAUT, and includes INTERACTIVE FULLY ELECTRICAL VEHICLES (I-FEVS), the Belgian Welding Institute, the University of Lulea, Magnetto Automotive, and Thinkstep. 6 partners with two vehicle prototypes in mind and many different use cases. Soon our project website will be up and running!



VULKANO project continues with the III General Assembly Meeting

The third General Assembly Meeting of VULKANO project took place in Warsaw on 4-5th July 2018 in presence of the Project Technical Advisor of the European Commission. The meeting gathered more than 30 members of 11 companies located in 6 different countries, in order to review the general status of the project after the first twenty four months of execution.

The project has satisfactorily achieved its objectives throughout this time, obtaining useful results:

  • Operating conditions of the two demo site furnaces (steel and ceramic sector) and the requirements from the new technology solutions to be implemented at the furnace have been defined.
  • Development of Phase Change Materials (PCM) high temperature (up to 900ºC). After the simulations and the laboratory tests, the production of new PCM has started as well as it pre-implementation in ceramic furnace.
  • Development of new refractories with the use of byproducts for the production of innovative materials. For steel furnace, materials based on alumina are used, while based on zirconia materials have been employed for the ceramic furnace.
  • Feasibility of the natural gas substitution by the different syngas sources and Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD) simulation of syngas/natural gas mixtures with adapted co-firing burners. Two different burners have been developed: dedicated burner for 100% of syngas combustion and hybrid burner for 0-100% of syngas / natural gas combustion.
  • Optimization of the furnace monitoring and control system through metaheuristics algorithms and implementation. Steel case: automatization of gasifier&co-firing system. Ceramic case: control of PCM system.
  • Presentation of a flexible holistic in-house predictive tool prioritizing the critical parameters for each sector with a video explicative.
  • Start the construction of the replica furnace.
  • Updated market analysis presentation.

With the results of the assessment, IEn as Task leader on WP5.2, 5.3 and 5.4, presented the co-firing CFD simulations, jointly undertaken by IEn and CIDAUT for the unmodified burners. It has been designed, simulated and experimentally tested two new burners: a hybrid one to operate between 0 to 100% of syngas substitution and a dedicated one to operate at 100% with syngas.

Furthermore, VULKANO project partners have already generated seven scientific publications and with an estimated number of 13 to 15 during 2019. CIDAUT has already presented one paper in ECOS Conference in Guimaraes entitled “Application of the CFD simulation to the evaluation of natural gas replacement by syngas in burners of the ceramic sector”.

More info: http://www.vulkano-h2020.eu/

Keywords: VULKANO, CFD, co-firing, syngas, furnaces


Meeting of Biourb Natur consortium in Fermoselle

The consortium team of the project “Biobuilding diversity, bioclimatic architecture, sustainable rehabilitation and its application in natural areas” held a meeting in the House of Park Arribes del Duero in Fermoselle (Zamora) on the last 2nd of August.

The BIOURB NATUR project is mainly aimed to extend the use of bio-building solutions in energetic and constructive rehabilitations of non-residential buildings in natural areas, to train the cross-border construction sector in the new opportunities of sustainable building, to promote energy and environmental sustainability in buildings as a technical-scientific tourist attraction in natural areas and to reactivate the use of buildings in these cross-border natural areas. This project is co-financed by the programme of cooperation INTERREG V-A Spain-Portugal (POCTEP) 2014-2020 and will run until December 2019.

Representatives of all the partners attended the meeting with the presence of the Regional Energy Agency of Castilla y León (EREN, Main Beneficiary) Polytechnic Institute of Bragança (IPB), CIDAUT Foundation, Natural Heritage Foundation of Castilla y León (FPNCYL), Construction Institute of Castilla y León (ICCL) and  the Municipality of Bragança.

The main objective of the meeting was the technical review of the progress in technical activities, as well as communication and project coordination activities.

Activity 1, in which CIDAUT participates, is ongoing and corresponds to the characterization of the buildings and their surrounding environment; it includes, among other information, data about the current conditions of buildings and their energy consumption.

Within Activity 2, CIDAUT has developed a methodology aimed to determine energy savings of different bioclimatic solutions (Sunspaces, Trombe walls or Canadian wells) when it is applied to tertiary buildings. Results are shown at the SCB Cal-02 tool, available to users on the project website.

Activity 3, which is also ongoing, consists of the physical implementation of several bioclimatic solutions in eight specific buildings, five of them located in natural parks in Castilla y León (Spain) and the other three located in Montesinho Natural Park (Bragança, Portugal). Results will be monitored by CIDAUT in some of them.

Finally, the Communication Activity includes the project web development, handbooks, video images, briefings and technical sessions in order to train building professionals about the implementation of bioclimatic solutions. It was agreed that it will be carried out throughout the project.

Tags: BIOURB NATUR, bioclimatic architecture, sustainable building, POCTEP