Solvay and RUAG join forces to supply next-generation space launcher programs
Solvay (Alpharetta, GA, US) announced May 31 it has signed a new agreement to supply RUAG (Bern, Switzerland) with advanced structural composites for US and European space launcher programs.
Solvay will supply MTM 46 composite products for RUAG to manufacture large integrated structural components including payload fairings, stage and payload adapters, dispensers and separation systems on next-generation launchers. MTM 46 is a high performance, out-of-autoclave toughened epoxy resin system that meets space agencies requirements and can be used in light and stiff sandwich structures. It was specifically developed for extreme demand applications such as space programs.
Oven-cured, vacuum-bagged prepregs show promise in production primary structures.
Compared to legacy materials like steel, aluminum, iron and titanium, composites are still coming of age, and only just now are being better understood by design and manufacturing engineers. However, composites’ physical properties — combined with unbeatable light weight — make them undeniably attractive.
There are numerous methods for fabricating composite components. Selection of a method for a particular part, therefore, will depend on the materials, the part design and end-use or application. Here's a guide to selection.