Sai Aditya Pradeep
Graduate Student, Clemson University
BIOGRAPHYSai Aditya is PhD Student at the Automotive Engineering Department (Materials and Manufacturing Stream) in Clemson University. His PhD research focuses on the scalable production of thermoplastic nano-cellular foams via supercritical fluid assisted (ScF) injection molding, geared for automotive application.
He is currently engaged in projects with the Department of Energy (DOE) and Honda Research & Development Americas (HRAO) focusing on and Lightweighting Class A Pamela via ScF Foaming of Thermoplastic Olefin in an Ultra-lightweight Carbon Fiber Reinforced Thermoplastic Composites Door Assembly.
Sai has also interned at the Apple Inc and is keen on working in the Polymer R&D sector.
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
Thermoplastic Based Nonwoven Composites – The New Promising Lightweight Materials for Automotive Structures
The increasing use of carbon fiber composites in the civil aviation sectors is fueled by the perpetual need for stiffer and lightweight materials. This is supported by the fact that the two flagship commercial jetliners are manufactured using these composites. Nevertheless, a significant amount of scrap is generated during the manufacturing process that has been historically discarded thereby posing a major environmental concern. Retrieving and recycling of carbon fiber via the pyrolysis of the matrix has proven to be scalable and energy efficient. Since the retrieved fibers are discontinuous and non-homogenous in length, they cannot be reused for their original application. However, creating a non-woven mat from these recycled fibers is shown as an interesting proposition vis-a-vis their retention in stiffness. This leads to the creation of a relatively low cost raw material that is extremely attractive for automotive lightweight applications since most components designed are stiffness critical. However, major issues with adoption of these materials are supply chain, historical knowledge for design & processing and the lack of accurate material models. This talk presents ongoing efforts at the Clemson Composites Center at overcoming these challenges by gaining insight into the effect of mechanical properties by varying the length of carbon fiber reinforcements in the same thermoplastic matrix and identifying ideal components for automotive applications.