NASA Backs New Aircraft Composites Project

Following a million dollar partnership, the Arlington Research Institute (UTARI) at the University of Texas  is set to develop new technologies to predict the strength and life expectancy of composite-based rotor blades used in aircraft.

Endel Iarve, a research scientist and composite materials expert will lead the three-year NASA backed project called “Development of Fatigue Life Prediction of Rotor Spars by Using Discrete Damage Modelling.”

Larve joined the University of Texas at Arlington and the UTA Research Institute in 2015 as a strategic addition to the newly created Institute for Predictive Performance Methodologies, part of two-pronged strategy to increase research activity and to engage corporations in the process of translating discoveries into practical uses.

The NASA project is funded through the federal agency’s Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate in alignment with the Advanced Composites Project, which focuses on providing safe and sustainable U.S. and global aviation. Researchers also are working to reduce the timeline for development and certification of state-of-the-art composite materials and structures, which will help make advanced composite components more competitive in commercial aircraft.

Aerospace companies are constantly looking for ways to design and produce next generation aircraft more efficiently, It is very exciting to contribute to this goal by developing computational methods capable of simulating material behaviour and reducing the amount of testing.

Recent research interests are in the area of integrated computational materials science and engineering, bringing together manufacturing and performance aspects of advanced composite materials. Recent developments include discrete damage modelling methodologies for laminated composites under broad range of loading conditions including compression and fatigue.