Until now, the durability of plastic components has been extremely difficult to assess, considering the variety of influencing factors. This is particularly important for critical safety components, whose failure involves a significant danger potential and subsequent liability risks.
At the "JEC" trade show held from 1 to 4 April in Paris, at its stand U74, hall 1.3, Fraunhofer LBF will present solutions for simulating the service life of components made from plastic and other composite materials.
The number and usage of components made from plastic and composite materials has been growing steadily throughout the last few years. Until now, reliable, material-specific testing methods and rating concepts for these plastic components, enabling an assessment of their expected service life, have not been available. Within the framework of a Wing Project of the German Federal Ministry for Education and Research lead by Robert Bosch GmbH, engineers are currently working on new material technologies. Research scientists at the Fraunhofer Institute for Durability and System Reliability LBF in Darmstadt are developing a simulation method which will enable the reliable assessment of fatigue and ageing of plastic components under various ambient influences. Using specimens made from thermoplastic materials and resembling the actual components, researchers have investigated the behaviour of the materials in laboratory tests, as a function of material, geometry, manufacturing process and various environmental factors (such as temperature, fuel, or oil). These parameters are critical to strength, load-carrying capability and service life of the materials.
The effect of these combined parameters on material fatigue can subsequently be shown in a numerical simulation of the components. "First of all we analyse the vibratory strength of plastic specimens immersed in an oil bath, by introducing cyclic loads", explains Andreas Büter, Head of Department at Fraunhofer LBF. "Depending on the load at which specimen fatigue or fracture occurs, the fatigue strength, i.e. the relationship between the cyclic load applied and the maximum permitted number of vibrations can be calculated." On the basis of the results obtained, a diagram called Wöhler curve is determined by the engineers, which enables a statistical assessment of the fatigue life of a component.
How a fuel rail, for example, will withstand engine vibrations under simultaneous contact with fuel, is simulated on the basis of the results obtained by means of a numerical model of the component. "We calculate the stress and strain occurring in the material at various loads", explains Büter. "We know from experiments the stresses the material can withstand without damage, and at which strains damage occurs. Hence we can assess the service life of plastic components with maximum reliability".
The purpose of the simulation models, which are adapted to the specific material in hand, is to enable designers to take into account ageing processes and the effects of various ambient factors on plastic components at an early stage in the development phase - similar to metal components. This will reduce the cost and time involved in design modifications and adaptation of shape.
Anke Zeidler-Finsel | Fraunhofer Gesellschaft
Etching Microstructures with Lasers
25.10.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Lasertechnik ILT
Applying electron beams to 3-D objects
23.09.2016 | Fraunhofer-Institut für Organische Elektronik, Elektronenstrahl- und Plasmatechnik FEP
Physicists from the University of Würzburg have designed a light source that emits photon pairs. Two-photon sources are particularly well suited for tap-proof data encryption. The experiment's key ingredients: a semiconductor crystal and some sticky tape.
So-called monolayers are at the heart of the research activities. These "super materials" (as the prestigious science magazine "Nature" puts it) have been...
Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.
This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...
Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion
Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...
Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.
"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...
In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.
A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...
14.10.2016 | Event News
14.10.2016 | Event News
12.10.2016 | Event News
28.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering
28.10.2016 | Physics and Astronomy
28.10.2016 | Life Sciences