Author: Nigel MacCarthy

Composites and Autoclave Move Update

Notice of Potential Service Disruption

The move of Composites and the Autoclave are now planned to take place during the month of JULY 2015.

The new location of the Aeronautics Composites Suite is on level 1 of the City & Guilds building room 125. (on the floor directly below the college main entrance on Exhibition Road.)

The new location of the Aeronautics Autoclave Laboratory is on  level 1 of the City and Guilds building room 124, next to the City & Guilds building Goods-Inward.

During this month, we are planning to move equipment sequentially such that each item should only be unusable for a maximum of 1 week.

In most cases, it should be possible for work to carry on with equipment that has either been moved and re-commissioned (subject to successful re-commissioning) or with equipment that has not yet moved.

Equipment will therefore be spread across two sites during the move period.

Gary Senior and Jonathan Cole will be supervising the move and this could mean a delay to some activities, project work, training etc.

As soon as we have the confirmed project timeline for each item of equipment moving in July, we will share this.




Composites and Autoclave Move News

It is anticipated that following AMP Phase-2 handover in March 2015, there will be a period of potential disruption to the service as item of machinery and instrumentation are moved to their new location. Current estimates are that disruption will occur between April and June 2015, but we would advise that you keep in regular contact with your supervisor for specific information.

By moving each item of equipment over and recommissioning immediately, down-time will be minimised.

Honda Tunnel: Fan Failure

Last Monday one of the blades of the Honda Tunnel fan broke. This resulted in all blades in one of the two nacelles being destroyed. The tunnel is now not in operation and work will begin immediately on the National Wind Tunnel Facility upgrade plan for the Honda. The estimated return to service date is October 2015. For any further information about this, please contact Dr Nigel MacCarthy.

Supersonic Wind Tunnel

Imperial College has approved funding for a brand new Supersonic wind tunnel in Aeronautics. This will be co-located with the current high speed/pressure facilities in the annexe building attached to the corner of ACE. This part of Aeronautics will remain in the ACE annexe after the move of the department to the C&G building in 2017.

The building work is due to start after the Composites and Autoclave move across to their new location in the C&G building in March 2015. The project is expected to be completed by the Autumn of 2015. Our current Supersonic wind tunnel will not be affected by these works.

The project is to create a unique, highly-flexible high speed wind tunnel testing facility for fundamental and applied studies of transonic and supersonic air flows. In contrast with many supersonic tunnels in operation today, the new tunnel will be designed to maximise the use of modern instrumentation such as laser-based measurement systems. This feature is especially relevant in light of significant recent advances in flow measurement technology.



Composites and Autoclave Move

The building work on the new Aeronautics Composites Suite and Autoclave room has begun. These spaces will be handed over to the college by Lang O Rourke, the main Phase 2  (Decant) contractor, on the 20th March 2015.

The present Composites Suite and Autoclave, will be moved over in a phased manner between the date above and the end of 2015. We hope to keep most activities running with minimal downtime.

New Aeronautics Laboratories and Technology Workshop

As a result of Hydrodynamics moving to the Civil Engineering building and Structures Testing to the DFF and PACT Laboratories in the C&G Building, the department has re-configured rooms L56,  L56A  and RH155 to create the following;

  • Micro-Thruster & Nano Composite Research Laboratory (L56)
  • Turbulence Imaging Laboratory (L56A)
  • Technology Workshop (RH155)

More information on these new laboratories coming soon..

Structures Testing

A big investment in Structures Testing equipment took place over the last year, including a new Drop tower rig and other Instron test machines. Most of this new equipment is now commissioned and operational in the Dynamic Fracture and Forming Laboratory (DFF) and Polymers, Adhesive and Composites Testing Laboratory (PACT) which Aeronautics share with Mechanical Engineering.

Hydrodynamics Laboratory

Hydrodynamics Flume

The new Hydrodynamics Laboratory was build as part of AMP Phase 1. Over recent months the flume has been fully commissioned and is now available for use by members of the department. The flume has a cross-section of 0.6m wide by 0.7m high and an 8.5m long test section with glass side walls, floor and downstream end. This makes it possible to view models from many orientations. The contraction end of the flume is designed to minimise the turbulence in the test section and is fitted with honeycomb and 2 mesh screens. With the flume full, water can flow through the test section at up to 1m/s and re-circulates via pipework running underneath the mezzanine walkway. A carriage system is fitted to the top rails allowing models to be driven through the water at speeds of up to 3.8m/s. The flume and carriage controllers are digital and controllable from easy to use re-configurable PC software. The Hydrodynamics laboratory is fully equipped, providing the optimum amount of services, such as dry-compressed air, mains water, 13A and 3-phase electrical supplies and class-4 laser interlocking. The laboratory is situated in the basement of the Civil Engineering Skempton Building, room number 043A. Entry to the lab is swipe card controlled so if you wish to visit or use the facility, please let me know so that we can make the necessary access arrangements.