Advanced Materials

Centauri is conducting material development and analysis activities for advanced composite structures.

    These efforts are focused on development of advanced airframes, structures, and components for high-speed, long duration flight.  This includes manufacturing techniques for high-temperature resins, carbon fibers, and advanced ceramics for integrated airframe & thermal protection. Centauri capabilities for advanced materials development include the streamlined fabrication, testing, and analysis of in-house prototype designs.

     

    Our Approach

     

    Composite fabrication methods such as filament winding, compression molding, resin infusion, and prepreg hand layup are employed in Centauri in-house facilities to create rocket motor casing, nozzles, material test coupons, and other composite structures using the following equipment:
    • 4-axis McClean Anderson Cyclone winder
    • Wisconsin curing oven with rotisserie
    • 60 Ton heated platen press
    • Prototype 3D printer

    Advanced modeling and simulation for aerodynamics, thermal, and mechanical performance is performed by an inhouse team of analysts using both industry and Centauri-developed tools. The mechanical and physical properties of these composite materials and their structures are tested and analyzed for performance to drive design or quality assurance to the customer with the following:
    • Hydroburst testing
    • Tensile testing
    • Compression testing
    • Flexural testing
    • Shear testing
    • Lap shear testing
    • Density measurement
    • Fiber/void volume determination

     

    Advanced materials expertise and diversity is present throughout Centauri from seasoned filament winding and nozzle fabrication technicians to senior rocket motor designers, and junior engineers investigating new technology areas in advanced materials. The collaborative nature of the Centauri team and available resources provide a unique environment that encourages curiosity, experimentation, and creativity in advanced materials prototyping. Examples of research topics are soft tooling technologies to reduce cost and improve efficiency of filament winding, processing of high temperature resin for filament winding, and process development of novel high temperature nozzle and airframe materials.

    Related Capabilities

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    Modeling Simulation and Analysis (MS&A) is a group of engineering processes that involves the study of system components, the development of mathematical and physics-based algorithms that can be coded into numerical software models and/or simulators. Modeling and simulation is used to explore solution trade space and evaluate alternatives to provide detailed insights to analytical questions.

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