Advanced composites research laboratory

The advanced composites research laboratory was established in 1989 with support from the Office of the Vice President for Research, the Institute for Manufacturing Research and the College of Engineering. Offices and equipment for fabrication of polymer composites, analytical modeling and mechanical testing of a wide variety of composites are located in the laboratory, which has approximately 1500 sq. ft. of space.

Fabrication equipment

  • TMP composite vacuum press (40 ton, 1000F) with control system for controlling pressure, temperature and vacuum in curing both thermoset and advanced thermoplastic composites
  • lab freezer for prepreg tape storage
  • fume hood
  • vacuum oven for resin preparation
  • standard lab oven for post curing
  • specimen dessicator chamber

Various molds for curing composite and neat resin specimens have been developed as a result of previous research.

Equipment for mechanical testing

  • two MTS Model 810 servohydraulic testing machines (22 kip and 55 kip)
  • two Newport vibration isolation tables (3' x 4' and 4' x 6') for mounting sensitive dynamic mechanical test apparatuses
  • Polytec MSV micro scanning laser vibrometer system
  • Monsanto Tensometer universal testing machine
  • Enduratec SmarTest servopneumatic cyclic test system
  • Optron noncontacting electro-optical biaxial displacement follower
  • three Kaman eddy current displacement transducers
  • two PCB piezoelectric impulse hammer kits including accelerometers
  • B&K miniature electromagnetic vibration exciter
  • Physical Acoustics ULTRAPAC II PC-based wet and dry ultrasonic test system
  • Physical Acoustics MISTRAS basic acoustic-emission test system
  • Digital Wave modal acoustic-emission and laminated plate-wave analyzer test system
  • Eddy Current Technology PCI eddy current analyzer
  • B & K PC-based impedance tube type material acoustic transmission test system
  • Kodak Motioncorder high speed photo recording system
  • two Satec M-3 creep testing machines with environmental chambers

Computers and instrumentation for data acquisition and analysis include a Sun UltraSparc workstation, two Sun Sparcstations, 20 workstations and a variety of PCs, all equipped with hard disks and all connected to laser printers. Data acquisition and analysis capabilities include two HP 3582A dual channel frequency spectrum analyzers, a B & K 2032 digital signal analyzer, a HP digital oscilloscope, a digital frequency counter, a digital function generator, and electrical resistance strain gage data acquisition system.  Numerous software packages such as HYPERMESH, ABAQUS, LS-DYNA 3D, FLUENT, MATLAB, MATHEMATICA,  LABVIEW, MICROSOFT OFFICE  and others are also available on the computers in the lab.

Equipment which has been developed as a result of our research includes impulse-frequency response apparatuses for dynamic mechanical testing in flexural, extensional and torsional modes of vibration, a shaker-excited double cantilever beam apparatus for flexural vibration testing, an impulse-frequency response specimen preloading fixture for attachment to the Monsanto Tensometer and a new high temperature dynamic mechanical testing apparatus for ceramic, metallic and intermetallic matrix composites and fibers.

Center for automotive research

The Center for automotive research conducts research and coordinates instructional programs aimed at preparing the graduate students to solve practical problems by using fundamental knowledge in many engineering disciplines. The center is self-supported from external funds obtained by the director in cooperation with the faculty. All the work is done by the faculty and graduate students. Facilities include ten fully instrumented test cells, including a microprocessor-controlled cold room and optically accessible single cylinder engine. There is also laser-based diagnostic equipment and a high-speed data acquisition system.

Contact: Naeim A. Henein

Acoustics, vibration, and noise control (AVNC) laboratory

The acoustics, vibration, and noise control (AVNC) laboratory is equipped to carry out a variety of acoustics and vibrations tests.

Major equipment in the lab

  • two walkin size fully anechoic chambers
  • three vibration tables
  • three multi-channel signal analyzers
  • two microphone arrays (one with 64 microphones and the other with 16 microphones)
  • vibration controller
  • vibration shakers (100lb force)
  • power amplifiers
  • power suppliers
  • charge amplifiers
  • intensity probe
  • precision integrating sound pressure level meters
  • digital scopes
  • programmable function generators
  • ultrasonic positioning digitizer

Ming-Chia Lai's research group

The primary interests of Prof. Lai's research group are in the fields of combustion and energy conversion, IC engine and gas turbine combustion and emission, fuel cells, laser diagnostics in thermal fluid engineering, computational fluid dynamics applications, spray systems in automotive engineering and manufacturing processes.

ContactMing-Chia Lai

Dynamics, vibration and energy research group (DVERG)

Prof. Tan's research focuses on understanding fundamental issues in dynamics, vibration and energy with applications to automotive, biomechanical, civil and mechanical systems.

DVERG website

ContactChin-An Tan