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Posted: Jan 29, 2014

Element Hitchin to Test Self-healing Aerospace Composites

(Nanowerk News) Element Hitchin, UK, has been chosen as a materials testing partner in HIPOCRATES, a 3-year Seventh Framework Program (FP7) research project worth more than 3.7 million euro that is designed to develop state-of-the-art self-repairing composite materials for the aerospace industry. Preliminary work has already started on the venture, which brings together some of Europeís foremost companies and institutions in a consortium of materials testers, aerospace manufacturers, and universities from France, Spain, the Netherlands, and Greece.
The research has the potential to transform the aerospace industry, as it seeks to adapt resins already widely used by aeronautical manufacturers and operators, utilizing nano-technology to turn secondary structural composites into self-healing materials. Aircraft incorporating this technology would be more durable and have a longer service life, leading to significantly lower operational costs.
Elementís role within the 11-strong consortium will be to design and develop impact, fracture and fatigue mechanical tests to assess the efficiency of the self-healing process.
Rick Sluiters, Elementís VP of Europe operations, says: ďAs one of Europeís market-leading materials testing laboratories, to be integral to a project this ambitious furthers Element Hitchinís deserved reputation as cutting-edge experts in composites.
ďThis research will also benefit all Element aerospace testing teams, as the knowledge gained and new test methodologies innovated will be shared across our global network of 1,400 engaged experts and 40 laboratories. Our prime partners highly value Elementís ongoing role at the forefront of aerospace test development, recognizing that when they approach any of our laboratories worldwide, they receive a consistent service that taps into the expertise of our entire platform,Ē he adds.
To be concluded by November 2016, the pan-European endeavor is being part-funded by the European Commissionís Seventh Framework Program, which is contributing 2,774,148 euro to the project.
Elementís team of 1,400 scientists, engineers and technicians work in 40 laboratories located throughout the U.S. and Europe.
Source: Correlated Magnetics Research (press release)
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