All composite parts are not flat – so why should all composite fabric be flat? At Textum we realize that composite parts take many different shapes and sizes. That’s why we have worked diligently over the years to develop specialty and 3D textiles in addition to our focus on flat fabrics. Textum holds exclusive rights to multiple US and foreign patents covering 3D and shaped fabrics. Our capabilities include helical fabrics, tubular fabrics, braided fabrics and preforms such as I-beams, T-shapes, X-shapes, etc. These fabrics can be manufactured with essentially any material that can be presented in yarn form; however, the most typical yarns used include carbon fiber, fiberglass and aramid.
Tubular fabrics have many applications. Tubular fabrics are used in pipe repair, permanent bridge construction and repair, temporary bridges, temporary structures for military uses or civilian disaster relief as well as many other civil engineering applications. Tubular fabrics are also used frequently in aerospace applications from structural components to gaskets. The uses for tubular fabrics are about as limited as your imagination.
In the past, tubular fabrics have typically been produced using braiding machines. This is an acceptable method for some uses; however, braiding machines are typically limited to a fiber orientation of +/- 45 degrees or 60 degrees. Unlike braided fabrics, Textum’s unique woven tubular fabrics have fibers oriented 0/90 degrees offering exceptional hoop strength along the entire length of the fabric.
Additionally, these fabrics can be shaped on loom to accommodate our customer’s specific applications. A wide variety of shapes and sizes are possible. For example, a curved seamless tube can be woven to set inner and outer diameters. The tube can be constructed in such a way that it will conform to a selected diameter if inflated. Additionally, half tube or curved “U” shaped fabrics can be woven. An example application for this fabric would be a fan blade containment shroud on a jet engine. Textum’s unique tubular weaving technology allows for fabrics to be woven with specific predetermined shapes to their cross section allowing for a close fit to an irregular shaped mandrel.
Contact Textum today and let our engineers help you design a tubular fabric for your specific application.
Textum specializes in designing and developing needle punched materials and needling processes for carbon fiber and certain ceramic fiber textile preforms. During this process, random or specifically oriented in-plane filaments throughout the preform are redirected through the preform thickness thus increasing the fiber volume in the through thickness (Z direction). The increase in Z direction fiber volume can aide in interlaminar preform mechanical properties, through thickness thermal conductivity and other fiber dominated properties. The Z direction fiber volume fraction can be controlled by the frequency of needling which is expressed as PPSI, penetrations per square inch. Contact us today to learn more about our needling capabilities.
Textum offers in-house sewing services and stitched products for 3-D reinforced composite applications and stitched laminations for flexible insulation products. In the case for composite applications, the stitches will provide improved through thickness reinforcement. Sewing is an excellent way to build near net shape preforms utilizing, for example, standard 2D fabrics in the in-plane directions. Textum has experience weaving a variety of materials including carbon fibers, ceramic fibers and various metal wires and virtually any material available in fiber form. Applications for stitched laminates include thermal insulations and blankets for applications up to 2000 degrees F and higher for short term exposures. Contact us today to learn more about our composite sewing capabilities.