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Publication - Professor Ian Hamerton

    SPH for design of an industrial scale composites recycling process


    Huntley, SJ, Rendall, T, Longana, ML, Pozegic, T, Lee, J, Potter, KD & Hamerton, I, 2019, ‘SPH for design of an industrial scale composites recycling process’.


    Composite waste poses a significant problem in many industries today. There are both environmental and financial motivations for finding alternatives to disposing of the waste in landfills. Recycling the composite materials offers one such alternative. Typically, this involves removing the matrix and cutting the fibres into short, discontinuous lengths. A key requirement in producing commercially valuable composites from these discontinuous fibres is a high level of fibre alignment. A technology, invented at the Univeristy of Bristol called High
    Performance Discontinuous Fibre (HiPerDiF), produces such material. The next stages for this technology involve upscaling the design from its current laboratory scale to an industrial-scale machine. This requires a higher
    throughput of fibres whilst maintaining the high level of alignment. The alignment mechanism is driven by fluid dynamics and is modelled using SPH in this work. The short fibres are suspended in a water jet and sprayed between thinly-spaced parallel plates. This work aims to validate the SPH model using experimental results and conduct an initial investigation into some design parameters that could influence alignment. It is shown that the model captures the trend of the fibre alignment well and that plate spacing has
    a much larger effect on alignment than jet velocity.

    Full details in the University publications repository