Cimarron Composites granted DOT certification for pressure vessels

This includes carbon fiber over-wrapped pressure vessels.

Cimarron Composites (Huntsville AL, US) has been granted DOT certification for a 47" diameter type 4 (polymer-lined) vessel for the containment of 4,000 psi natural gas. This pressure vessel is also capable for hydrogen transport. A 30" diameter, 40' long variation of this vessel is currently under development, intended to operate at 3,625 psi. Additionally, Cimarron Composites now has DOT approval for a type 3 carbon fiber over-wrapped pressure vessels (COPVs). The 20 liter and 30 liter versions of this vessel are qualified under ISO 11119-3. Though originally designed for breathing air, the COPV can also be used to hold other gasses such as hydrogen. Cimarron also produces a 5,500 psi type 3 helium vessel for rocket launch systems.

On the experimental front, Cimarron Composites has gained several technological assets that will allow for a greater scope of research and development concerning both standard COPVs and newer, experimental products. A new 4'x'12' autoclave able to operate at up to 450 F and 200 psi is currently playing a large role in investigating new materials' properties, especially in the comparison of auto-clave and oven-cured composites. The most recent addition has been a 10,000 fps high-speed photography and photogrammetry system. Whereas traditional hydroproof testing can provide information concerning volumetric expansion at various pressures, it fails to pinpoint the subtleties of carbon fiber over-wrap interactions under extreme stress. The high speed camera allows the identification of the exact location and failure mode during a burst test, while the photogrammetry helps to understand the motions of the COPV when being proof tested and helps in the refinement of the final pressure vessel design. On top of that, Cimarron Composites has completed the installation of a specialized coatings facility that includes a FANUC robot and a GRACO proportioning system, able to apply coatings based in epoxies, urethanes and polyureas. The facility also includes a high pressure water blast pump and a 20,000 psi liquid nitrogen pump system that can be used to remove contaminaPon before the coaPngs are applied.