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Project name:

Thermal protection sandwich panel

Status: Idea
Creation date: 10-01-2022

Project objectives:

Summary

An Italian public entity and a Research organisation, developed a thermal protection sandwich panel that allows integrating the structural and thermal resistance in a single component up to high temperatures. It has significant potential applications in the automotive, railway and naval transportation as well as in the energy, metallurgic and nuclear sectors. The deal is for commercial agreement with technical assistance, licence agreements and research cooperation.

Description

The proposed structure can be used for applications in which high operating temperatures and important mechanical stresses occur. This innovation was originally developed for the aerospace sector, providing the vehicle with thermal protection during the atmospheric re-entry. In order to minimise the amount of heat transmitted to the structures as much as possible, thermal protection devices are commonly used. Currently, there are several solutions for passive thermal protection systems that can be grouped mainly into two categories: ablative and reusable. In particular:
• Thermal ablative shields provide protection by dissipating energy through the ablation mechanism. They must be replaced necessarily after each use. Such type of protection is indispensable for mission profiles characterised by high speeds and by particular thermodynamic conditions of highly energetic incident flow.
• Reusable thermal protection systems are often characterised by a high emissivity that allows about 80% of the incident energy to be re-radiated outwards, thus significantly reducing the heat that reaches the structure. Furthermore, in order to ensure greater resistance to oxidation and greater emissivity, surface coatings are usually applied. The morphology, the deposition technique and the material used for the deposition of these coatings vary according to the characteristics of the incident heat flows
The choice of the type of protection is mainly based on the type of mission for which the vehicle is intended. In addition, different areas of the aircraft may be subject to different thermo-mechanical stresses due to different conditions of incident heat flow determined by the aerodynamic profile. Many different solutions have been proposed in the prior art, however most of them still present problems in terms of reliability and require coupling the thermal protections to the supporting structure of the aircraft through rather complex and expensive arrangements. All these drawbacks can be overcome by the proposed innovation which allow a very easy access to the inner components of the vehicle for inspection and / or maintenance operations. The innovative thermal protection sandwich panel includes i) a lower skin arranged on an internal face of the sandwich panel not exposed to the environment, ii) a central core, iii) an upper skin placed on an external face of the sandwich panel exposed to the environment and iv) a surface coating applied to the upper skin to protect it from oxidation.
Private and public companies are the preferred partners, but also research centres and Universities.
The proposer is looking for commercial agreement with technical assistance and licence agreements as well as research cooperation. Possible license agreement are also considered to allow the partner using the services to develop its own applications.

Advantages & innovations

Blast chilling of about 1000° C in less than 4cm • Very high thermal stability • Very high resistance to mechanical loads up to temperatures of over 1300° C • Exceptional resistance to bending loads • Ease of assembly on the supporting structure • Accessibility from the outside to allow easy maintenance

Stage of development

Available for demonstration

Contact / source: Enterprise Europe Network (europa.eu)

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