Wednesday, 9 September 2015

Summer Placement: Materials Science & Engineering, University of Sheffield

Sam Cheney has been working in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at The University of Sheffield carrying out research into Cure monitoring of Electrically cured carbon fibre ply drops. Here's Sam's story:

"I have been using a novel way of curing carbon fibre panels which uses electrical current to heat up a panel and cure the resin. I have been investigating in particular how heat is transferred when there is a decrease in the number layers of carbon fibre between the connecting plates and finding out if there will be any areas of concentrated heat, ideally there will be no change and the panel will cure evenly, however, from testing this theory I have found that heat is transferred slower in thicker sections so I have started investigating solutions and my end aim for the placement is to solve this problem and move on to more complicated ply drop structures.

"After the project I hope to be a contributor to a research paper and become published in a journal.

"I am enjoying my placement, I think the thing I most enjoy is the fact that I am actually making progress on a subject that is currently not fully understood.

"I have been using a blow torch to melt solder and create connecting terminals and the other day I ended up setting fire to the wire, the carbon fibre panel and the tool I was using! Thankfully there was only a small amount of black smoke and I managed to put it out without setting off any fire alarms!"

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