The institute of structures and design has achieved an internationally recognized status regarding the development and manufacture of CMC lightweight structures. In this area, the development work concentrates on computer assisted dimensioning (FEM, Ansys), on the material- and manufacture-oriented design with modern CAD tools (Unigraphics), as well as on the manufacture of full-scale prototypes for testing.Thereby the entire process chain is available at DLR, from the inspection of incoming raw materials, up to the component qualification by non destructive and destructive evaluation at maximum temperatures of up to 1700 °C.
The main application fields for C/C-SiC materials are lightweight components in aerospace, e.g. hot structures and low thermal expansion structures. In this field, fibre reinforced ceramic materials represent a key technology and could already be introduced successfully for thermal protection systems of spacecraft, rocket propulsion systems and for telescope structures. In direct cooperation with industrial partners C/C SiC brake discs and brake pads as well as rocket motor components (jet vanes) have been developed successfully and were transferred to industrial partners for serial production.
Current development is focused on: