Compaction and Cure of Resin Film Infusion Prepregs
Gutowski et al.'s model has been employed to describe the cure and consolidation of prepregs used for resin film infusion. Resin kinetics, rheology, flow and fiber deformation are considered. Resin kinetics are simulated with an isothermal autocatalytic-1 type relation. The non-Newtonian viscosity of the Cytec� 754 resin is represented with a gel type expression. The one dimensional flow of resin through a deformable, partially saturated porous medium is studied. A nonlinear partial differential equation describing the spatial and temporal variation of the fiber volume fraction combining the continuity equation, Darcy's Law, and mat compressibility has been derived and solved numerically. Resin is assumed to be incompressible and inertial effects are neglected. Based on the resin content of regions where resin and fiber coexist, expressions for tracking resin flow through fully and partially saturated regions of fiber are given. Values of material parameters for the E-QX 3600-5 glass fabric are estimated from literature data involving compression of similar dry fabrics and through comparison of computed results with the experimental data. Results for the final thickness of the consolidated part agree with the experimental values, but those for the mass loss do not.