Composite Curing Systems

Composite Curing SystemsThermal curing is a critical step in manufacturing quality composite materials. Traditionally, most composite parts required autoclaves for proper curing. Today, low cost out-of-autoclave curing of aerospace-grade composite parts is possible using a vacuum bagging system with a walk-in batch oven. The process is precisely controlled and monitored to ensure void-free composite parts.

Despatch provides complete composite curing systems that include a custom configured oven, integrated multiport vacuum and compressed air system, and Focal Point Process Controller. The system meets AMS2750, BAC5621, NADCAP and AS9100 requirements and has been utilized by the world’s leading aerospace manufacturers.

Airflow is a critical factor in achieving uniformly cured composite parts and no one has more experience with the dynamics of thermal airflow than Despatch. Our ovens are known for exceptional temperature uniformity and our proprietary Focal Point Control System has been specifically designed to provide the process control, data acquisition and reporting needed for complex composite curing.

 

Composite Curing Oven Technology

The anchor of the Despatch composite curing system is a custom designed oven that delivers exceptional temperature uniformity for perfectly cured parts. Multiple thermocouples are connected through jack panel arrays to fully monitor the part as well as the oven temperature.

  • Flexible and customizable to specific composite curing requirements
  • Tight uniformity, standard at +/-5°C with capabilities up to +/-2.5°C
  • Electrically heated or gas fired (direct or indirect)
  • Custom airflow to optimize heat transfer to unique molds

 

Integrated multi-port vacuum and compressed air systems

Out-of-autoclave curing requires a vacuum bagging system to apply pressure to the composite to eliminate voids. The Despatch vacuum system includes a vacuum pump and ports that can be added in sets of eight. A compressed air system is available for pressure bag curing.

  • Vacuum pump and all required components for complete system
  • Ultra tight compressed air pressure tolerances +/-0.1 PSI
  • Stringent vacuum stability tolerances <1” Hg loss per hour at 25”Hg

 

Focal Point™ Process Control System

Tight process control and monitoring is critical for consistent quality parts. Focal Point™ fully controls the curing process and documents all process information, providing traceability and validation of part quality.

  • Modular design utilizes remote I/O for optional thermocouple, vacuum and compressed air sub-systems
  • All relevant process data is saved on system PC and can be accessed from plant computer system
  • Standard and customized reporting capability to validate process
  • Vacuum and pressure system can be monitored and controlled from display
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