Commenced in January 2007
Frequency: Monthly
Edition: International
Paper Count: 12

Search results for: Alistair McIlhagger

12 Experimental Analysis of Advanced Multi-Axial Preforms Conformability to Complex Contours

Authors: Andrew Hardman, Alistair T. McIlhagger, Edward Archer

Abstract:

A degree of research has been undertaken in the determination of 3D textile preforms behaviour to compression with direct comparison to 2D counterparts. Multiscale simulations have been developed to try and accurately analyse the behaviour of varying architectures post-consolidation. However, further understanding is required to experimentally identify the mechanisms and deformations that exist upon conforming to a complex contour. Due to the complexity of 3D textile preforms, determination of yarn behaviour to a complex contour is assessed through consolidation by means of vacuum assisted resin transfer moulding (VARTM), and the resulting mechanisms are investigated by micrograph analysis. Varying architectures; with known areal densities, pic density and thicknesses are assessed for a cohesive study. The resulting performance of each is assessed qualitatively as well as quantitatively from the perspective of material in terms of the change in representative unit cell (RVE) across the curved beam contour, in crimp percentage, tow angle, resin rich areas and binder distortion. A novel textile is developed from the resulting analysis to overcome the observed deformations.

Keywords: comformability, compression, binder architecture, 3D weaving, textile preform

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11 Simulation on Influence of Environmental Conditions on Part Distortion in Fused Deposition Modelling

Authors: Anto Antony Samy, Atefeh Golbang, Edward Archer, Alistair McIlhagger

Abstract:

Fused deposition modelling (FDM) is one of the additive manufacturing techniques that has become highly attractive in the industrial and academic sectors. However, parts fabricated through FDM are highly susceptible to geometrical defects such as warpage, shrinkage, and delamination that can severely affect their function. Among the thermoplastic polymer feedstock for FDM, semi-crystalline polymers are highly prone to part distortion due to polymer crystallization. In this study, the influence of FDM processing conditions such as chamber temperature and print bed temperature on the induced thermal residual stress and resulting warpage are investigated using the 3D transient thermal model for a semi-crystalline polymer. The thermo-mechanical properties and the viscoelasticity of the polymer, as well as the crystallization physics, which considers the crystallinity of the polymer, are coupled with the evolving temperature gradient of the print model. From the results, it was observed that increasing the chamber temperature from 25°C to 75°C lead to a decrease of 1.5% residual stress, while decreasing bed temperature from 100°C to 60°C, resulted in a 33% increase in residual stress and a significant rise of 138% in warpage. The simulated warpage data is validated by comparing it with the measured warpage values of the samples using 3D scanning.

Keywords: finite element analysis, fused deposition modelling, residual stress, warpage

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10 An Investigation into the Influence of Compression on 3D Woven Preform Thickness and Architecture

Authors: Calvin Ralph, Edward Archer, Alistair McIlhagger

Abstract:

3D woven textile composites continue to emerge as an advanced material for structural applications and composite manufacture due to their bespoke nature, through thickness reinforcement and near net shape capabilities. When 3D woven preforms are produced, they are in their optimal physical state. As 3D weaving is a dry preforming technology it relies on compression of the preform to achieve the desired composite thickness, fibre volume fraction (Vf) and consolidation. This compression of the preform during manufacture results in changes to its thickness and architecture which can often lead to under-performance or changes of the 3D woven composite. Unlike traditional 2D fabrics, the bespoke nature and variability of 3D woven architectures makes it difficult to know exactly how each 3D preform will behave during processing. Therefore, the focus of this study is to investigate the effect of compression on differing 3D woven architectures in terms of structure, crimp or fibre waviness and thickness as well as analysing the accuracy of available software to predict how 3D woven preforms behave under compression. To achieve this, 3D preforms are modelled and compression simulated in Wisetex with varying architectures of binder style, pick density, thickness and tow size. These architectures have then been woven with samples dry compression tested to determine the compressibility of the preforms under various pressures. Additional preform samples were manufactured using Resin Transfer Moulding (RTM) with varying compressive force. Composite samples were cross sectioned, polished and analysed using microscopy to investigate changes in architecture and crimp. Data from dry fabric compression and composite samples were then compared alongside the Wisetex models to determine accuracy of the prediction and identify architecture parameters that can affect the preform compressibility and stability. Results indicate that binder style/pick density, tow size and thickness have a significant effect on compressibility of 3D woven preforms with lower pick density allowing for greater compression and distortion of the architecture. It was further highlighted that binder style combined with pressure had a significant effect on changes to preform architecture where orthogonal binders experienced highest level of deformation, but highest overall stability, with compression while layer to layer indicated a reduction in fibre crimp of the binder. In general, simulations showed a relative comparison to experimental results; however, deviation is evident due to assumptions present within the modelled results.

Keywords: 3D woven composites, compression, preforms, textile composites

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9 Variation of Warp and Binder Yarn Tension across the 3D Weaving Process and its Impact on Tow Tensile Strength

Authors: Reuben Newell, Edward Archer, Alistair McIlhagger, Calvin Ralph

Abstract:

Modern industry has developed a need for innovative 3D composite materials due to their attractive material properties. Composite materials are composed of a fibre reinforcement encased in a polymer matrix. The fibre reinforcement consists of warp, weft and binder yarns or tows woven together into a preform. The mechanical performance of composite material is largely controlled by the properties of the preform. As a result, the bulk of recent textile research has been focused on the design of high-strength preform architectures. Studies looking at optimisation of the weaving process have largely been neglected. It has been reported that yarns experience varying levels of damage during weaving, resulting in filament breakage and ultimately compromised composite mechanical performance. The weaving parameters involved in causing this yarn damage are not fully understood. Recent studies indicate that poor yarn tension control may be an influencing factor. As tension is increased, the yarn-to-yarn and yarn-to-weaving-equipment interactions are heightened, maximising damage. The correlation between yarn tension variation and weaving damage severity has never been adequately researched or quantified. A novel study is needed which accesses the influence of tension variation on the mechanical properties of woven yarns. This study has looked to quantify the variation of yarn tension throughout weaving and sought to link the impact of tension to weaving damage. Multiple yarns were randomly selected, and their tension was measured across the creel and shedding stages of weaving, using a hand-held tension meter. Sections of the same yarn were subsequently cut from the loom machine and tensile tested. A comparison study was made between the tensile strength of pristine and tensioned yarns to determine the induced weaving damage. Yarns from bobbins at the rear of the creel were under the least amount of tension (0.5-2.0N) compared to yarns positioned at the front of the creel (1.5-3.5N). This increase in tension has been linked to the sharp turn in the yarn path between bobbins at the front of the creel and creel I-board. Creel yarns under the lower tension suffered a 3% loss of tensile strength, compared to 7% for the greater tensioned yarns. During shedding, the tension on the yarns was higher than in the creel. The upper shed yarns were exposed to a decreased tension (3.0-4.5N) compared to the lower shed yarns (4.0-5.5N). Shed yarns under the lower tension suffered a 10% loss of tensile strength, compared to 14% for the greater tensioned yarns. Interestingly, the most severely damaged yarn was exposed to both the largest creel and shedding tensions. This study confirms for the first time that yarns under a greater level of tension suffer an increased amount of weaving damage. Significant variation of yarn tension has been identified across the creel and shedding stages of weaving. This leads to a variance of mechanical properties across the woven preform and ultimately the final composite part. The outcome from this study highlights the need for optimised yarn tension control during preform manufacture to minimize yarn-induced weaving damage.

Keywords: optimisation of preform manufacture, tensile testing of damaged tows, variation of yarn weaving tension, weaving damage

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8 Investigating the Demand of Short-Shelf Life Food Products for SME Wholesalers

Authors: Yamini Raju, Parminder S. Kang, Adam Moroz, Ross Clement, Alistair Duffy, Ashley Hopwell

Abstract:

Accurate prediction of fresh produce demand is one the challenges faced by Small Medium Enterprise (SME) wholesalers. Current research in this area focused on limited number of factors specific to a single product or a business type. This paper gives an overview of the current literature on the variability factors used to predict demand and the existing forecasting techniques of short shelf life products. It then extends it by adding new factors and investigating if there is a time lag and possibility of noise in the orders. It also identifies the most important factors using correlation and Principal Component Analysis (PCA).

Keywords: demand forecasting, deteriorating products, food wholesalers, principal component analysis, variability factors

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7 The Complementary Explanations of Institutional and Feminist Perspectives for Female Social Enterprise in Pakistan

Authors: Mohammad Sohail Yunis, Hina Hashim, Alistair R. Anderson

Abstract:

Entrepreneurship is gendered with masculine qualities, yet social enterprise epitomizes caring a feminine quality. However enterprising practices may have little to do with gender. Consequently, the purpose of this paper is to examine practices using two very different explanatory theories, feminist and institutional theory, to establish the role played by gender. This study is situated in KP, the poor but traditional north of Pakistan. Utilising on an interpretive qualitative research approach, this research collected data through in-depth interviews with ten women social entrepreneurs of KP, Pakistan and analyzed using thematic analysis. Empirically, this paper identifies and describes on a number of interesting themes that relate to the women entrepreneurship such as 'women empowerment, patriarchal culture, role of culture and societal norms, religious extremism and terrorism, forced entrepreneurs, change creators, institutional corruption, and security issues'. In addition, female social enterprise in KP is set in a patriarchal, masculine culture, but the practices negotiate institutional obstacles to bring benefits to the disenfranchised. Finally, this research claims to present an original insight into female social entrepreneurship in a developing country context and provide fresh theoretical and empirical perspectives to advance knowledge and scholarship.

Keywords: female social entrepreneurship, institutional theory, feminist theory, developing countries

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6 Studying the Effect of Carbon Nanotubes on the Mechanical Properties of Epoxy-Nanocomposite for the Oil Field Applications

Authors: Mohammed Al-Bahrani, Alistair Cree, Zoltan J. Gombos

Abstract:

Carbon nanotubes are currently considered to be one of the strongest and stiffest engineering materials available, possessing a calculated tensile strength of σTS ≈ 200GPa and Young’s moduli up to E = 1.4 TPa. In the context of manufactured engineering composites, epoxy resin is the most commonly used matrix material for many aerospace and oil field, and other, industrial applications. This paper reports the initial findings of a study which considered the effects that small additions of nickel coated multi-wall carbon nanotubes (Ni-MWCNTs) would have on the mechanical properties of an epoxy resin matrix material. To successfully incorporate these particles into the matrix materials, with good dispersive properties, standard mixing techniques using an ultrasonic bath were used during the manufacture of appropriate specimens for testing. The tensile and flexural strength properties of these specimens, as well as the microstructure, were then evaluated and studied. Scanning Electronics Microscope (SEM) was used to visualise the degree of dispersion of the Ni-MWCNT’s in matrix. The results obtained indicated that the mechanical properties of epoxy resin can be improved significantly by the addition of the Ni-MWCNT’s. Further, the addition of Ni-MWCNT’s increased the tensile strength by approximately 19% and the tensile modulus by 28%. The flexural strength increased by 20.7% and flexural modulus by 22.6% compared to unmodified epoxy resin. It is suggested that these improvements, seen with the Ni-MWCNT’s particles, were due to an increase in the degree of interfacial bonding between Ni-MWCNT and epoxy, so leading to the improved mechanical properties of the nanocomposite observed. Theoretical modelling, using ANSYS finite element analysis, also showed good correlation with the experimental results obtained.

Keywords: carbon nanotubes, nanocomposite, epoxy resin, ansys

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5 Lateralisation of Visual Function in Yellow-Eyed Mullet (Aldrichetta forsteri) and Its Role in Schooling Behaviour

Authors: Karen L. Middlemiss, Denham G. Cook, Peter Jaksons, Alistair Jerrett, William Davison

Abstract:

Lateralisation of cognitive function is a common phenomenon found throughout the animal kingdom. Strong biases in functional behaviours have evolved from asymmetrical brain hemispheres which differ in structure and/or cognitive function. In fish, lateralisation is involved in visually mediated behaviours such as schooling, predator avoidance, and foraging, and is considered to have a direct impact on species fitness. Currently, there is very little literature on the role of lateralisation in fish schools. The yellow-eyed mullet (Aldrichetta forsteri), is an estuarine and coastal species found commonly throughout temperate regions of Australia and New Zealand. This study sought to quantify visually mediated behaviours in yellow-eyed mullet to identify the significance of lateralisation, and the factors which influence functional behaviours in schooling fish. Our approach to study design was to conduct a series of tank based experiments investigating; a) individual and population level lateralisation, b) schooling behaviour, and d) optic lobe anatomy. Yellow-eyed mullet showed individual variation in direction and strength of lateralisation in juveniles, and trait specific spatial positioning within the school was evidenced in strongly lateralised fish. In combination with observed differences in schooling behaviour, the possibility of ontogenetic plasticity in both behavioural lateralisation and optic lobe morphology in adults is suggested. These findings highlight the need for research into the genetic and environmental factors (epigenetics) which drive functional behaviours such as schooling, feeding and aggression. Improved knowledge on collective behaviour could have significant benefits to captive rearing programmes through improved culture techniques and will add to the limited body of knowledge on the complex ecophysiological interactions present in our inshore fisheries.

Keywords: cerebral asymmetry, fisheries, schooling, visual bias

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4 Immersed in Design: Using an Immersive Teaching Space to Visualize Design Solutions

Authors: Lisa Chandler, Alistair Ward

Abstract:

A significant component of design pedagogy is the need to foster design thinking in various contexts and to support students in understanding links between educational exercises and their potential application in professional design practice. It is also important that educators provide opportunities for students to engage with new technologies and encourage them to imagine applying their design skills for a range of outcomes. Problem solving is central to design so it is also essential that students understand that there can be multiple solutions to a design brief, and are supported in undertaking creative experimentation to generate imaginative outcomes. This paper presents a case study examining some innovative approaches to addressing these elements of design pedagogy. It investigates the effectiveness of the Immerse Lab, a three wall projection room at the University of the Sunshine Coast, Australia, as a learning context for design practice, for generating ideas and for supporting learning involving the comparative display of design outcomes. The project required first year design students to create a simple graphic design derived from an ordinary object and to incorporate specific design criteria. Utilizing custom-designed software, the students’ solutions were projected together onto the Immerse walls to create a large-scale, immersive grid of images, which was used to compare and contrast various responses to the same problem. The software also enabled individual student designs to be transformed, multiplied and enlarged in multiple ways and prompted discussions around the applicability of the designs in real world contexts. Teams of students interacted with their projected designs, brainstorming imaginative applications for their outcomes. Analysis of 77 anonymous student surveys revealed that the majority of students found: learning in the Immerse Lab to be beneficial; comparative review more effective than in standard tutorial rooms; that the activity generated new ideas; it encouraged students to think differently about their designs; it inspired students to develop their existing designs or create new ones. The project demonstrates that curricula involving immersive spaces can be effective in supporting engaging and relevant design pedagogy and might be utilized in other disciplinary areas.

Keywords: design pedagogy, immersive education, technology-enhanced learning, visualization

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3 Caged Compounds as Light-Dependent Initiators for Enzyme Catalysis Reactions

Authors: Emma Castiglioni, Nigel Scrutton, Derren Heyes, Alistair Fielding

Abstract:

By using light as trigger, it is possible to study many biological processes, such as the activity of genes, proteins, and other molecules, with precise spatiotemporal control. Caged compounds, where biologically active molecules are generated from an inert precursor upon laser photolysis, offer the potential to initiate such biological reactions with high temporal resolution. As light acts as the trigger for cleaving the protecting group, the ‘caging’ technique provides a number of advantages as it can be intracellular, rapid and controlled in a quantitative manner. We are developing caging strategies to study the catalytic cycle of a number of enzyme systems, such as nitric oxide synthase and ethanolamine ammonia lyase. These include the use of caged substrates, caged electrons and the possibility of caging the enzyme itself. In addition, we are developing a novel freeze-quench instrument to study these reactions, which combines rapid mixing and flashing capabilities. Reaction intermediates will be trapped at low temperatures and will be analysed by using electron paramagnetic resonance (EPR) spectroscopy to identify the involvement of any radical species during catalysis. EPR techniques typically require relatively long measurement times and very often, low temperatures to fully characterise these short-lived species. Therefore, common rapid mixing techniques, such as stopped-flow or quench-flow are not directly suitable. However, the combination of rapid freeze-quench (RFQ) followed by EPR analysis provides the ideal approach to kinetically trap and spectroscopically characterise these transient radical species. In a typical RFQ experiment, two reagent solutions are delivered to the mixer via two syringes driven by a pneumatic actuator or stepper motor. The new mixed solution is then sprayed into a cryogenic liquid or surface, and the frozen sample is then collected and packed into an EPR tube for analysis. The earliest RFQ instrument consisted of a hydraulic ram unit as a drive unit with direct spraying of the sample into a cryogenic liquid (nitrogen, isopentane or petroleum). Improvements to the RFQ technique have arisen from the design of new mixers in order to reduce both the volume and the mixing time. In addition, the cryogenic isopentane bath has been coupled to a filtering system or replaced by spraying the solution onto a surface that is frozen via thermal conductivity with a cryogenic liquid. In our work, we are developing a novel RFQ instrument which combines the freeze-quench technology with flashing capabilities to enable the studies of both thermally-activated and light-activated biological reactions. This instrument also uses a new rotating plate design based on magnetic couplings and removes the need for mechanical motorised rotation, which can otherwise be problematic at cryogenic temperatures.

Keywords: caged compounds, freeze-quench apparatus, photolysis, radicals

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2 Transport of Inertial Finite-Size Floating Plastic Pollution by Ocean Surface Waves

Authors: Ross Calvert, Colin Whittaker, Alison Raby, Alistair G. L. Borthwick, Ton S. van den Bremer

Abstract:

Large concentrations of plastic have polluted the seas in the last half century, with harmful effects on marine wildlife and potentially to human health. Plastic pollution will have lasting effects because it is expected to take hundreds or thousands of years for plastic to decay in the ocean. The question arises how waves transport plastic in the ocean. The predominant motion induced by waves creates ellipsoid orbits. However, these orbits do not close, resulting in a drift. This is defined as Stokes drift. If a particle is infinitesimally small and the same density as water, it will behave exactly as the water does, i.e., as a purely Lagrangian tracer. However, as the particle grows in size or changes density, it will behave differently. The particle will then have its own inertia, the fluid will exert drag on the particle, because there is relative velocity, and it will rise or sink depending on the density and whether it is on the free surface. Previously, plastic pollution has all been considered to be purely Lagrangian. However, the steepness of waves in the ocean is small, normally about α = k₀a = 0.1 (where k₀ is the wavenumber and a is the wave amplitude), this means that the mean drift flows are of the order of ten times smaller than the oscillatory velocities (Stokes drift is proportional to steepness squared, whilst the oscillatory velocities are proportional to the steepness). Thus, the particle motion must have the forces of the full motion, oscillatory and mean flow, as well as a dynamic buoyancy term to account for the free surface, to determine whether inertia is important. To track the motion of a floating inertial particle under wave action requires the fluid velocities, which form the forcing, and the full equations of motion of a particle to be solved. Starting with the equation of motion of a sphere in unsteady flow with viscous drag. Terms can added then be added to the equation of motion to better model floating plastic: a dynamic buoyancy to model a particle floating on the free surface, quadratic drag for larger particles and a slope sliding term. Using perturbation methods to order the equation of motion into sequentially solvable parts allows a parametric equation for the transport of inertial finite-sized floating particles to be derived. This parametric equation can then be validated using numerical simulations of the equation of motion and flume experiments. This paper presents a parametric equation for the transport of inertial floating finite-size particles by ocean waves. The equation shows an increase in Stokes drift for larger, less dense particles. The equation has been validated using numerical solutions of the equation of motion and laboratory flume experiments. The difference in the particle transport equation and a purely Lagrangian tracer is illustrated using worlds maps of the induced transport. This parametric transport equation would allow ocean-scale numerical models to include inertial effects of floating plastic when predicting or tracing the transport of pollutants.

Keywords: perturbation methods, plastic pollution transport, Stokes drift, wave flume experiments, wave-induced mean flow

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1 Investigation of Yard Seam Workings for the Proposed Newcastle Light Rail Project

Authors: David L. Knott, Robert Kingsland, Alistair Hitchon

Abstract:

The proposed Newcastle Light Rail is a key part of the revitalisation of Newcastle, NSW and will provide a frequent and reliable travel option throughout the city centre, running from Newcastle Interchange at Wickham to Pacific Park in Newcastle East, a total of 2.7 kilometers in length. Approximately one-third of the route, along Hunter and Scott Streets, is subject to potential shallow underground mine workings. The extent of mining and seams mined is unclear. Convicts mined the Yard Seam and overlying Dudley (Dirty) Seam in Newcastle sometime between 1800 and 1830. The Australian Agricultural Company mined the Yard Seam from about 1831 to the 1860s in the alignment area. The Yard Seam was about 3 feet (0.9m) thick, and therefore, known as the Yard Seam. Mine maps do not exist for the workings in the area of interest and it was unclear if both or just one seam was mined. Information from 1830s geological mapping and other data showing shaft locations were used along Scott Street and information from the 1908 Royal Commission was used along Hunter Street to develop an investigation program. In addition, mining was encountered for several sites to the south of the alignment at depths of about 7 m to 25 m. Based on the anticipated depths of mining, it was considered prudent to assess the potential for sinkhole development on the proposed alignment and realigned underground utilities and to obtain approval for the work from Subsidence Advisory NSW (SA NSW). The assessment consisted of a desktop study, followed by a subsurface investigation. Four boreholes were drilled along Scott Street and three boreholes were drilled along Hunter Street using HQ coring techniques in the rock. The placement of boreholes was complicated by the presence of utilities in the roadway and traffic constraints. All the boreholes encountered the Yard Seam, with conditions varying from unmined coal to an open void, indicating the presence of mining. The geotechnical information obtained from the boreholes was expanded by using various downhole techniques including; borehole camera, borehole sonar, and downhole geophysical logging. The camera provided views of the rock and helped to explain zones of no recovery. In addition, timber props within the void were observed. Borehole sonar was performed in the void and provided an indication of room size as well as the presence of timber props within the room. Downhole geophysical logging was performed in the boreholes to measure density, natural gamma, and borehole deviation. The data helped confirm that all the mining was in the Yard Seam and that the overlying Dudley Seam had been eroded in the past over much of the alignment. In summary, the assessment allowed the potential for sinkhole subsidence to be assessed and a mitigation approach developed to allow conditional approval by SA NSW. It also confirmed the presence of mining in the Yard Seam, the depth to the seam and mining conditions, and indicated that subsidence did not appear to have occurred in the past.

Keywords: downhole investigation techniques, drilling, mine subsidence, yard seam

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