DEC 2018


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DECEMBER 2018 24 CompositesWorld WORK IN PROGRESS Because these structures are engineered to t into small packages and deploy by unfurling, dimensional precision is key to meeting deployment and performance requirements. ermal expansion of materials must be taken into account given tempera- ture extremes in space — temperatures in LEO can range from •••°C/•‚ƒ°F in full sun to -•••°C/-•‚ƒ°F in shade. erefore, simu- lation and testing are crucial. "Our booms are made using an out-of-autoclave manufacturing process using a thin combination of carbon ber and glass ber with thermoset epoxy resin," says Kamron Medina, aerospace engineer at Roccor. According to Medina, the combination of the carbon ber and glass made predicting the coeŒcient of thermal expansion (CTE) of the laminate diŒcult. A need for accuracy Roccor, in the early days of its product development, needed more accuracy in predicting the thermal expansion of its products in order to meet high thermal stability requirements. e company turned to AnalySwift (West Jordan, UT, US) for a solution and licensed the company's SwiftComp software to perform simula- tion of these structures. Roccor conducted a case study comparing the coeŒcient of thermal expansion (CTE) predictions vs. an average test result of a particular laminate. e CTE comparison chart above compares CTE predictions using classical laminate theory and SwiftComp. As shown, the classical prediction is not only signicantly o˜ from the test result but it also predicts a positive CTE when the actual CTE is slightly negative. e chart also shows that the SwiftComp prediction is well within the error bounds of the test average. Allan Wood, president and CEO of AnalySwift, says, "We believe SwiftComp provides a unique solution as a Modeling composites SwiftComp can be used either independently as a tool for virtual testing or as a plugin to power conventional 3D finite element analysis (FEA) codes with high- fidelity modeling. Source | Roccor Microsat boom Roccor's booms are made from a combination of carbon fiber and glass fiber with thermoset epoxy resin using an out-of-autoclave (OOA) manufacturing process. Source | Roccor 1.0 0.8 0.6 0.4 0.2 0.0 CTE Comparison Classical SwiftComp Test Avg. CTE, (ppm/°C) Comparing thermal expansion This case study compares the coe‹cient of thermal expan- sion (CTE) predictions vs. an average test result of a particular laminate. Source | Roccor

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