Texas A&M University,
Keywords: composites, curing, adhesives, nanotubes
Summary:Carbon nanoparticles are known to produce a strong, rapid heating response in the presence of a radio-frequency (RF) electromagnetic field. Here we show that this property can be used to selectively, locally cure nanocomposite thermoset adhesives in a range of industrial settings. For example, thermosetting adhesives in plastic-plastic bonding can be volumetrically heated to cure without deforming the surrounding plastic components (Figure 1). Such applications are ubiquitous in automotive joining. Lap shear mechanical tests show similar strength values to existing industrial levels at shorter times with low substrates temperatures. A similar technology can be used for curing adhesives for metal-metal bonding without inducing thermal stresses or distortions. This approach can also be applied to rapid curing and even printing of other curable systems such as phenolic resins or polycarbosilanes (a precursor for silicon carbide) for out-of-oven composite production.