AIMEN visits AMADE: Workshop on Mechanical Testing for CAELESTIS

On Thursday 28th September, two Spanish partners on CAELESTIS got together for an exchange on the progress of the project’s Work Package 6: ‘Model-Driven Smart Manufacturing. The WP is focused on the mechanical evaluation of materials selected for the chosen use case of an Outlet Guide Vane (OGV) of an aircraft. The task is performed by the AMADE research group at the University of Girona located in Catalonia, Spain, with the materials supplied by the AIMEN Technology Centre based in Galicia, Spain.

“Characterization of material properties is an important task inside CAELESTIS, first to validate the quality of the materials selected (resin + fibers), and second, to feed the simulation models that are going to be used for the OGV performance evaluation.

Coupons preparation is a crucial step, since it will determine if the testing is valid or not. It’s a labor-intensive task that depends mostly on the technician skills and all considerations being taken to avoid issues such as tabs debonding, coupon buckling, invalid failure modes, etc. It’s important as getting the materials ready for testing is not trivial, with the number of materials and amount of time required to get to the testing stage being high.”

Cristian Builes (AIMEN), CAELESTIS Project Coordination

AMADE has plenty of experience in mechanical testing, having work with large companies such as Airbus. Thus, it was no surprise that their CAELESTIS project partner AIMEN wanted to visit the AMADE laboratory facilities for an inside look at how the group prepare coupons and evaluate their mechanical performance. Important aspects such as surface preparation, tabs bonding, material alignment were highlighted at the laboratory, along with train gauges bonding and preparation, plus all-important measurement of material deformations.

Right now, the first test matrix of the project it’s being carried (materials pristine properties), due to be ready by the end of 2023. No issues regarding the materials or the testing have yet been reported.

Here at the beginning of 2023’s fourth quarter, WP6 of CAELESTIS is halfway complete. The next steps will include further mechanical testing for uncertainties evaluation and the effect of defects. This stage is going to require special coupons manufactured with artificial defects, plus the evaluation of dissimilar materials, since the final OGV will include metallic inserts.

The visit was carried out by Sergio Medina and Aravind Sasikumar from AMADE, with the support of Daniel Piedrafita and Lluc Roura in charge of the mechanical testing. AIMEN participants were Silvia Trillo, supervisor of mechanical and physical testing of the Advanced Manufacturing unit (MAVA), and Cristian Builes, WP leader and responsible for materials manufacturing inside the WP.

Find out more about AMADE Group work with CAELESTIS

AMADE is a composites research group from the University of Girona, Spain, founded in 1999. 

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Logo for the AMADE group at the University of Girona, specialising in analysis and advanced materials for structural design

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