Advanced Manufacturing

Hexion’s new two-part epoxy for large-scale aerospace composite manufacturing

Aircraft original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) are constantly increasing the amount of composite materials in aerospace projects as a direct response to climbing fuel costs. The operating efficiencies of lightweight airframes and components reduces operator expenses in an incredibly cost-driven industry. In order to relieve aerospace composite production constraints while maintaining top level component performance, Columbus, Ohio-based thermoset resin developer, Hexion Inc., has developed a first-of-its-kind, two-component epoxy manufacturing solution

The solution is based on Hexion’s EPIKOTE system 600-2 “Part A” resin and “Part B” curing agent system and utilizes a metering and mixing unit from Hübers Verfahrenstechnik Maschinenbau GmbH, a leader in casting and impregnating mixing technology. Hexion developed the in-line analytic control for the unit for efficient and accurate control of the dosing of the epoxy raw materials before the mixture is infused into a mold.

“To meet the aerospace industry’s strict performance requirements, epoxy composites have typically been produced by resin transfer molding or by infusion with closely controlled one-part systems, which have required cold transport and storage in small pails because of their inherent reactivity,” says Jean Rivière, Epoxy Global Aerospace Segment leader at Hexion. “The increasing use of composites across a range of structural aerospace applications has placed considerable pressure on this manufacturing approach. Hexion’s new two-component solution is designed to address this challenge, while delivering the highest quality finished parts.”

 

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William Kucinski is content editor at SAE International, Aerospace Products Group in Warrendale, Pa. Previously, he worked as a writer at the NASA Safety Center in Cleveland, Ohio and was responsible for writing the agency’s System Failure Case Studies. His interests include literally anything that has to do with space, past and present military aircraft, and propulsion technology.

Contact him regarding any article or collaboration ideas by e-mail at william.kucinski@sae.org.