NEWS ARCHIVE

MPhil congratulations (07 December 2016)
Vlad Zamorovskii had his viva voce examination today for a self-funded MPhil with the title Composite materials filled with ferromagnetic microwire inclusions demonstrating microwave response to temperature and tensile stress.  The outcome was Pass subject to minor corrections.  Congratulations!

EPSRC Future Composites Manufacturing Hub (07 December 2016)
Congratulations to the University of Nottingham and their partners on securing £10.3m of Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) funding for new research to explore and improve pioneering composite manufacturing techniques. NetComposites news item.

Academy for Skills and Knowledge (ASK) (07 December 2016)
BAE Systems has opened a new £15.6M aerospace skills and training academy at Samlesbury.  Lucintel news item.

PhD completion (10 November 2016)
Mahdi Al-Farttoosi had his viva voce examination on 26 November 2015 for a PhD thesis entitled Impact behaviour of reinforced concrete beams strengthened or repaired with carbon fibre reinforced polymer (CFRP).  The thesis abstract is now available on PEARL (thesis embargoed for 12 months). Congratulations on the completion!

ICCM21 Track 6.2 Processing-manufacturing Techniques (04 November 2016)
John Summerscales (and others to be confirmed) will lead the above Track at the 21st International Conference on Composite Materials (ICCM21) to be held in Xi'an (China) during 20-25 August 2017.  Papers are invited which address appropriate issues.  The deadline for submission of abstracts is Wednesday 30 November 2016. (24-Nov-2016: deadline for abstracts extended to 15 January 2017).

Three final year student composites projects published in
Plymouth Student Scientist, 2016, 9(2)
(01 November 2016)

Congratulations! (October 2016)
Paul Mackenzie (a 1992 Plymouth BEng (honours) Composites Engineering graduate) has joined Princess Yachts International plc as Director of Product Development.

Welcome (03 October 2016)
Alex Besinis has joined the university as Lecturer in Mechanical Engineering and a member of the ACMC.

New publication with Australian collaborators (03 October 2016)
JS is co-supervisor of Hossein Khanlou, a research degree candidate at Griffith University.  A Technical Note: On modelling thermo-chemical degradation of poly(lactic acid) arising from the research has just been published in Polymer Degradation and Stability.  The link offers free access to the article until 21 November 2016.

Awards Ceremony (21 September 2016)
1 MEng, and 8 BEng (honours) Mechanical Engineering with Composites and 29 BSc (honours) Marine and Composites Technology graduates received their respective degrees today.

World Human-Powered Speed Challenge (17 September 2016)
Sarah Peircy powered the Plymouth University hand cycle to a new IHPVA women's hand-powered cycle world speed record of 39.99 kph (24.85 mph) at Battle Mountain on Friday morning.  The second run, at 24.83 mph, was also faster than the previous record.  Project Nevada, led by Adam Kyte, incorporated a composite structural component designed, manufactured and confirmed viable by BEng/MEng honours students on the MATS348 Composites Engineering module.  The students will graduate at the Awards Ceremony this coming Wednesday.
BBC Devon  Plymouth Herald  WHPSC results table.

Career opportunity (12 July 2016)
The School of Marine Science and Engineering at Plymouth University is currently advertising for a Lecturer/Associate Professor/Reader in "advanced materials engineering".  For more information see Current Plymouth University vacancies with job reference A4930.  The closing date for applications was 09 August 2016.

FPCM proceedings (12 July 2016)
The papers presented at the 13th International Conference on Flow Processes in Composite Materials (FPCM-13, Kyoto Institute of Technology - Japan, 6-9 July 2016) are now available online.  Two ACMC papers on cost reduction in autoclave processing were presented: heated tooling and cool air pressurisation and curing resin infused composites.

PhD completion (27 May 2016)
Rzgar Abdalrahman had his viva voce examination on 14 December 2015 for a PhD thesis entitled Design and analysis of integrally-heated tooling for polymer composites.  The thesis is now available on PEARL. Congratulations on the completion!

PhD examination (16 May 2016)
Maozhou (Leo) Meng had his viva voce examination today for a PhD thesis entitled Fatigue failure of fibre reinforced plastics for marine environmentand has passed subject to minor corrections to the thesis.  The examination was held just 31.5 months after commencing the research.

Thesis now out of commercial confidentiality period (22 April 2016)
Robert Blackburn's MPhil thesis, The manufacture and testing of perforated composite acoustic panels, being a summary of the work he undertook in the GKN Aerospace KTP project (TCS3067, 2000-2003), is now available via the Plymouth Electronic Archive and Research library (PEARL).

Citation classic ! (29 January 2016)
The compressibility of a reinforcement fabric based on the undergradaute project by Neil Pearce and published in Composites Manufacturing, 1995, 6(1), 15-21 is today showing as cited by 100 on Google Scholar.  ScienceDirect indicates 72 citations.

PhD completion (06 January 2016)
Amjed Saleh Mahmood had his viva voce examination on Friday 27 November 2015 for a PhD thesis entitled Processing-performance relationships for fibre reinforced composites.  The thesis is now available on PEARL.  Congratulations on the completion!

Marine Composites book published (30 September 2015)
Elsevier have today announced the publication of the Marine Composites book.  The pre-publication offer (see below) will remain open for just a few days!  ScienceDirect  Kindle via Amazon

British Composites Society (BCS) Group on LinkedIn (21 August 2015)
This LinkedIn Group is primarily about the individual people within the composites industry, and especially opportunities for continuing professional development, career progression and recognition. If you would like to join, then please go to the BCS Group webpage where there should be a black-on-yellow Join button at top left of the page

New Marine Composites book (July 2015)
Jasper Graham-Jones and John Summerscales have edited a 14-chapter book on Marine Applications of Advanced Fibre-Reinforced Composites.  The book will be published by Elsevier in October 2015.

Welcome (02 February 2015)
Benjamin Salas and Rachel Moreau from the Département Science et Génie des Matériaux at the IUT de Bordeaux have joined the team for a three month internships hosted by Stephen Grove.

Welcome (01 February 2015)
Richard Pemberton has joined the university as Lecturer in Mechanical and Marine Engineering Design and a member of the ACMC.

Congratulations ! (September 2014)
Ian Gatehouse, 1992 graduate from the BEng (honours) Composites Engineering course, is now Senior Chief Engineer at GKN Aerospace.

ICCM20 Track 1-8:
Experimental Methods for Process Characterisation
(21 September 2014)
Steven Nutt (University of Southern California) and John Summerscales will lead the above Track at the 20th International Conference on Composite Materials (ICCM20) to be held in Copenhagen during 19-24 July 2015.  Papers are invited which address experimental methods for the following issues:

  • viscosity, rheology and flow
  • drape, conformability and preforming
  • permeability of porous media
  • vitrification, crosslinking and cure
  • volatile generation and void formation
  • data and image analysis and processing

The deadline for submission is Thursday 30 October 2014 using the conference abstract submission portal, please.

PRIMaRE Conference poster prize (05 June 2014)
The poster paper Gel-coating for marine structures by Zoltán Gombos and John Summerscales was today awarded third place in the Best Poster Award at the 1st PRIMaRE Annual Conference, Plymouth, 04-05 June 2014, organised by the Partnership for Research In Marine Renewable Energy.

Optimising composite material components for the marine environment (02 May 2014)
The Marine Innovation Centre (MarIC) in partnership with the National Composites Centre (NCC) invites you to the NCC, located in Bristol and Bath Science Park, to attend an exclusive free event for the Marine Industry on Wednesday 28th May 2014.  This one-off event is an opportunity to learn more about improving manufacturing processes, reducing costs, improving product performance and durability and the latest manufacturing techniques.  Numbers are limited and places will be allocated on a first come basis.  For details and to ensure your place is booked please use this link.

Dr Richard Cullen (27 March 2014)
Richard has today received formal confirmation of the award of Doctor of Philosophy following the examination of his thesis entitled "Air permeability of balsa core, and its influence on defect formation in resin infused sandwich laminates". Congratulations !

Personnel changes (03 February 2014)
Omar Sheikh, who graduated with the BEng composites degree in 2011, has joined the team as Research Assistant on the EU FP7 RampCo project.  Zoltán Gombos is now Associate Lecturer (part-time).  Vincent Martinez and Mathieu Tavernier (stage placement students from Université Bordeaux I) will be hosted by Stephen Grove during 03 February 2014 to 25 April 2014.

FP7 R4SME RampCo project (19 December 2013)
RampCo is a consortium of European SMEs, funded by the European Union FP7 programme.  The objective is to develop a lightweight, portable wheelchair ramp to facilitate access to public buildings throughout Europe.  Plymouth University is one of the RTD partners in the consortium, and will be responsible for evaluating the potential for weight reduction, outline and detail design of composite components and joints.  The RampCo consortium is funded for two years from January 2014, which takes the product to full-scale in situ evaluation.

Visitor from Brazil (04 November 2013)
ACMC is pleased to welcome Eric Olifiers for a four-month visiting fellowship funded by Science without Frontiers. He is an experienced mechanical engineer, with a masters in nuclear engineering from the University of Michigan, serving as an officer at the Technological Centre of the Brazilian Navy (Sao Paulo). He has recently started a part-time PhD at the University of Sao Paulo. He is here to widen his knowledge of composites manufacturing, and will be supporting undergraduate and EU-funded projects.

New research degree candidate (01 October 2013)
Maozhou (Leo) Meng has joined ACMC as a research degree candidate to study the fatigue failure analysis of fibre reinforced composite structures in extreme marine environments.  He will be supevised by Jahir Rizvi, Huirong Le and Stephen Grove.

Keynote speeches (08 August 2013)
John Summerscales will present two keynote speeches next month:

Leonardo internship (06 August 2013)
Marta LLorens Pérez, a BSc Environmental Science graduate from Universitat de Barcelona, has joined the InGeCt project for ten weeks funded by a Leonardo da Vinci Mobility Project in Europe internship.

Composites and the Environment workshop (22 July 2013)
South West Composites Group, in collaboration with ACMC, will host a workshop on Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) for Composites.  This event will be held on Wednesday 25 September 2013 at Dartington Hall. The meeting will consider the case for a range of composites materials and seek to provide a basis for a rational analysis of potential issues.  Key speakers from industry and academia will present the current knowledge of LCA for Composites.  Those who attend should move the environmental credentials of their business forward.  More information is available on this link. or by phone on 0117 3125270. To book a place, please complete this online form

FPCM-12 call-for papers issued (16 July 2013)
The 12th international conference on Flow Processes in Composite Materials (FPCM-12) will be held at the University of Twente in the Netherlands during 12-14 July 2014. The conference flyer and the latest updates are now available on the conference website. The deadline for submission of abstracts is 31 October 2013.

New KTP project with Crumb Rubber (15 July 2013)
Sara Castilho has today taken up the rôle of KTP Associate for the Knowledge Transfer Partnership between Crumb Rubber and Plymouth University to develop a commercially viable manufacturing process to improve the surface reactivity of fine rubber powder derived from reprocessed vehicle tyres

ASCE prize (25 June 2013)
At the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) International Workshop on Computing in Civil Engineering, held in Los Angeles during 23-25 June 2013, Yaqub Rafiq and Mahdi Al-Farttoosi were presented with the Best Paper Award in the Area of Information Modelling for their manuscript entitled "Using model updating to predict the failure of reinforced concrete elements".

Composite Failure Analysis Seminar on Thursday 27 June 2013 (06 June 2013)
The Plymouth University Electron Microscopy centre, in collaboration with ACMC, will host the above seminar.  Composite analysis has been widely requested by our industrial users.  There will be a number of speakers in the morning and, after a networking lunch, delegates will be split into groups for faciltity tours and analysis.  Places on this free seminar are limited to two delegates per company, except by prior arrangment.

David Harman viva voce examination for PhD (03 June 2013)
David Harman today defended his doctoral thesis, A costing strategy for the manufacture of advanced tuft reinforced laminate composites, and will be awarded the degree subject to minor corrections to the thesis.

Leonardo internship (03 June 2013)
Cristina di Tomasso, a Masters graduate in Environmental Engineering from Università Politecnica delle Marche, has joined the InGeCt project for ten weeks funded by a Leonardo da Vinci Mobility Project in Europe internship.

KTP Associate: Polymer Research and Process Development
at Crumb Rubber Limited with Plymouth University
(30 April 2013)
We are looking for a graduate to take the lead role to develop a commercially viable manufacturing process and embed new materials capability into Crumb Rubber Ltd creating a platform for innovative product development, optimising process efficiency and reducing environmental impact.

Richard Cullen viva voce examination for PhD (28 February 2013)
Richard Cullen today defended his doctoral thesis, Defect formation in vacuum resin-infused sandwich structures, and will be awarded the degree subject to corrections to the thesis.

Another 44 composites graduates (19 September 2012)
At the awards ceremony earlier today, degrees were awarded to 12 graduates from the BEng (honours) Mechanical Engineering with Composites, 9 graduates from the BSc (honours) Marine and Composites Technology, and 23 graduates from the BSc (honours) Marine Sports Technology courses.  See the respective links under Undergraduate on the menu to the left for more information on each course.

South West Composites Gateway (SWCG) event in Plymouth (September 2012)
SWCG are organising an Advanced Composite Manufacturing Techniques day on the Plymouth campus on Wednesday 26 September 2012.

Plymouth graduate designs Olympic medal-winning bikes (13 August 2012)
Dimitris Katsanis graduated with BEng (honours) Composite Materials Engineering in 1998. He is now director at Metron Advanced Equipment Limited in Nottingham.  Metron designed the bikes on which the British Olympic Cycling team won 8 gold, 1 silver and 1 bronze medals at London 2012.

See also George Scott in Road Cycling News dated 2 August 2012.

New researcher (14 May 2012)
Zoltán Gombos has today joined the ACMC staff as the post-doctoral research fellow on the InGeCt project.

New equipment (03 May 2012)
ACMC has taken delivery of a Wave Scan Dual surface quality measurement instrument funded by the InGeCt project.

Santander Postgraduate Internationalisation Scholarship (March 2012)
Aitor Hernandez Michelena, a part-time research degree candidate working at Acciona in Navarra, has been awarded a Santander Postgraduate Internationalisation Scholarship to permit him to undertake some of the testing for his doctoral studies in the laboratories of the University of Zaragoza. More information.

Career opportunities (10 February 2012)
ACMC is seeking to recruit a Research Fellow (job description - closing date 27-Feb-12) to support the InGect research project.  The School of Marine Science and Engineering is looking to recruit Lecturers/Associate Professors (SL) in both Mechanical Engineering and Marine Technology (job descriptions - closing date: 12-Mar-12).

New FP7 Research for SMEs funded In-Mould Gel-Coating project
(02 December 2011)
The european Research Executive Agency has just awarded ACMC over €1M for the InGeCt project to investigate an innovative environmentally friendly gelcoating technology for composites for marine and wind-turbine applications to reduce VOC emissions, processing time and cost.

New research degree candidates (01 October 2011)
Three new research degree candidates started today funded by the Iraqi MOHESR. They are:

  • Rzgar Abdalrahman (tooling for polymer composites)
  • Mahdi Al-Farttoosi (CFRP strengthened reinforced concrete)
  • Amjed Saleh Mahmood (process-property relationships in fatigue)

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) thesis formally submitted (01 July 2011)
Nilmini Dissanayake's corrected PhD thesis was formally submitted today. An outline of the project can be found at the Research projects/Natural Fibre LCA link on the menu to the left.  The e-thesis (4.227 MB PDF) is free to download from the Plymouth Electronic Archive and Research Library (PEARL).

KTP project with Lorient Polyproducts Limited (01 June 2011)
Natalia Kopociñska joined the staff as Knowledge Transfer Partnership Associate to develop Lorient’s R&D competence and infrastructure in order to enhance the understanding of current materials capability and establish a platform for further product development.

New Technology Strategy Board funding:
Grants for R&D in SMEs
(04 April 2011)
A new Technology Strategy Board scheme is offering funding to small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to engage in R&D projects in the strategically important areas of science, engineering and technology, from which successful new products, processes and services could emerge.  Open from 4 April 2011, the Grant for Research and Development (Grant for R&D) scheme will support R&D projects which offer potentially significant rewards and could stimulate UK economic growth. In contrast to the Collaborative R&D programme, Grant for R&D funding is available to single companies.  More info

Amandeep Virk
awarded Doctor of Philosophy
(17 December 2010)
Amandeep Singh Virk submitted his PhD thesis entitled "Numerical models for natural fibre composites with stochastic properties" in the Summer of 2010 and formally submitted the final bound copy in December.  So far, the work resulted in papers in Composites Part A (3), Composites Science and Technology, Journal of Natural Fibres, and Materials Science and Technology (2). See the Jute reinforcements page for details of the project and the associated journal papers.  The e-thesis (4.612 MB PDF) is one of the first five research theses in the Plymouth Electronic Archive and Research Library (PEARL).

New resin injection machine (19 October 2010)
ACMC have taken delivery of a Composite Integration Ciject® One resin injection machine equipped for either polyester or epoxy resin and a Composite Integration one-metre square glass fronted heated/cooled mould tool.  The system was commissioned on Tuesday 19 October 2010.

Nilmini Dissanayake viva voce examination (16 September 2010)
Nilmini Dissanayake defended her PhD thesis entitled "Sustainable composites using natural fibres and resins from natural resources" in August 2010.  The outcome was that the degree be awarded subject to minor corrections. However, the arrival of her first son, Mayon Ariyasinghe, in September will delay the submission of the final bound thesis.  So far, the work resulted in papers in Composites Part A (2), Journal of Bio-Based Materials and Bioenergy, and the Journal of Natural Fibres. See the Natural Fibres LCA page for details of the journal and conference papers from this research.

Award for Zoeftig KTP (10 March 2010)
The Knowledge Transfer Partnership with Zoeftig was awarded the South West Regional KTP Award at a ceremony held in the Grosvenor Hotel in London on 10 March 2010.  The project developed a revolutionary seating system, inFINITE, for passenger terminals and also improved the existing product range.  The new sophisticated and technologically advanced solution has significantly enhanced Zoeftig’s competitive position in the market.

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Honorary Degree for Alan Harper (December 2004)
Alan Harper of Plastech Thermoset Tectonics will be awarded an honorary Master of Engineering degree at the University of Plymouth's annual awards ceremony.  This is in recognition of Alan's long association with ACMC through graduate employment, collaborative R&D (including 3 Teaching Company programmes) and industry training.

New PhD Research Programme (01 October 2004)

Plymouth graduate Ross Pomeroy started a 3-year PhD programme on novel characterisation methods for glass fibre preforms.  The project is an EPSRC Industrial CASE award in collaboration with Plastech Thermoset Tectonics.

Kenaf Fibre in Malaysia (14-23 September 2004)
Dr John Summerscales returned from a 2-week trip to Malaysia in September 2004, funded by the British Council Higher Education Links (BCHEL) and Committee for International cooperation in Higher Education (CICHE).  He has been discussing new applications for kenaf fibre.

Company Training Overseas (May & August 2004)
Julian Spooner and Dr Tim Searle delivered in-house company training in resin infusion for wind turbine manufacturer GE Wind/Tecsis AT in Sorocaba (Brazil) during 11-14 May 2004.  A second course was delivered at Molded Fiber Glass in Texas during 10-13 August 2004.

Third Workshop on Resin Infusion Processes (February 2002)
Speakers from ACMC will be opening the Composites Processing Association workshop to be held at the Innovative Manufacturing Centre in Nottingham on Thursday 20 June 2002.  This is the third of a series of regional events, intended to introduce the composites industry to a range of cleaner, more efficient manufacturing technologies.

The morning session includes contributions from Plastech, Chem-Trand, Cray Valley, St Gobain BTI, Aerovac Systems, Rietschle (UK) and Beard & Cornall.  After lunch, process demonstrations will be given by ACMC, Plastech and Aerovac Systems.