Out of Autoclave
Structural Prepreg Composites
In 2007, The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) embarked on an initiative to demonstrate disruptive manufacturing technologies aimed at reducing cost and time for production of components for defense systems and platforms. In the area of polymer composites, Non-Autoclave Manufacturing Technology was jointly accomplished by a Boeing led team and the US Government (DARPA) under the guidance of the United States Air Force. This program developed and demonstrated non-autoclave manufacturing technology for polymer matrix prepreg composite structures, including aspects of a compatible material family, processes, tools, equipment, and design guidelines. The technology development focused on establishing robust materials and out-of-autoclave processes for fabrication of full-size aerospace structural components with the same performance as autoclave-processed materials. The developments in this program enable the use of the same materials and processes for both development and production, mitigating risks frequently realized in program life cycles at maturation to production.
The views, opinions, and/or findings contained in this article/presentation are those of the authors/presenters and should not be interpreted as representing the official views or policies, either expressed or implied, of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency or the Department of Defense.