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Life in a Material World – Thermoplastic Composites

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Thermoplastic composites are experiencing a resurgence in interest, in particular because of the work with ONR and NIAR in Wichita.  There has been significant investments in thermoplastic composites in the past which have highlighted their significant toughness and damage tolerance advantages compared with thermoset composites.  However, thermoplastics have significantly different processing parameters which have made them more expensive in manufacturing environments and structural properties which don’t always let them take advantage of their toughness in design.  This presentation will provide some historical context for composite materials selection and identify future opportunities.