Pulse Ultrasonic Cure Monitoring of the Pultrusion Process
This article discusses the results of a series of experiments on pulse ultrasonic cure monitoring of carbon fiber reinforced plastics applied to the pultrusion process. The aim of this study is to validate the hypothesis that pulse ultrasonic cure monitoring can be applied (a) for profiles having small cross sections such as 7 mm 0.5 mm and (b) within the environment of the pultrusion process. Ultrasonic transducers are adhesively bonded to the pultrusion tool as actuators and sensors. The time-of-flight and the amplitude of an ultrasonic wave are analyzed to deduce the current curing state of the epoxy matrix. The experimental results show that ultrasonic cure monitoring is indeed applicable even to very thin cross sections. However, significant challenges can be reported when the techniques are used during the pultrusion process.