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5 New Feasibility studies announced by the EPSRC Composites Manufacturing Research Hub

Published: 21st June 2019

5 Feasibility Studies Announced by the EPSRC Future Composites Manufacturing Research Hub


The EPSRC Future Composites Manufacturing Hub (The Hub) has announced the funding of five new feasibility studies, following the call for proposals issued in November 2018.

Each award of £50,000 will typically fund a six month project, expanding the national research effort for composites manufacturing in the UK. Proposals were invited from UK academic researchers for projects that addressed fundamental, step-changing research in five key composites manufacturing areas, which were identified in conjunction with the Composites Leadership Forum: High-rate deposition and rapid processing technologies; design for manufacture via validated simulation; multifunctional composites and integrated structures; inspection and in-process evaluation; and recycling and re-use.

The call received proposals from academic institutions across the UK. Awarded funding will support new research projects at two existing Hub institutions and will welcome three new Spoke members at the University of Sheffield, Wrexham Glyndŵr University and Ulster University.

Titles of the successful feasibility studies chosen for funding are:

  • Controlled Micro Integration of Through Thickness Polymeric Yarns, Dr Edward Archer, Ulster University
  • Microwave in-line heating to address the challenges of high rate deposition, Prof Richard Day, Wrexham Glyndŵr University
  • Virtual un-manufacturing of fibre-steered preforms for complex geometry composites, Prof Stephen Hallett, University of Bristol
  • Manufacturing Process Simulation for Pre-forming of Complex Composite Tubular Structures, Dr Shuai Chen, University of Nottingham
  • Evaluating the potential for in-process eddy-current testing of composite structures, Dr Robert Hughes, University of Bristol

Proposals were reviewed by a panel of independent industrial and scientific experts, who followed the EPSRC standard peer review panel guidelines on confidentiality and conflicts of interest. The process was overseen by Dr Tracy Hanlon, EPSRC Senior Portfolio Manager, Manufacturing the Future.

The Hub employs a flexible funding model to ensure research responds to opportunities highlighted by technology road mapping, industry needs, or the National Composites Strategy, as defined by the Composites Leadership Forum. These 5 new Feasibility Studies are an opportunity to investigate risky and ambitious ideas, which may lead to major collaborative Hub Core Projects if feasibility is demonstrated, which are typically 3 years in length and involve two universities and industrial partners.

More information about all new projects will be posted on the Hub website as they progress.

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