With this special CMC technology and its engineering competence, DLR has been involved in all relevant space programs in Germany and Europe (ESA):
In the framework of national and international research programs, as well as in bilateral projects with industrial partners, a multitude of successful developments in the field of friction materials, like high performance ceramic brake discs and brake pads, led to serial products, manufactured by industrial partners under licence of DLR. As an example, the cooperation with Schindler Elevator Ltd. led to the serial introduction of C/C-SiC brake pads for high performance elevators.
The strong point of the department is the closed engineering chain, which is the basis for the realization of tailored C/C-SiC materials for challenging components and structural parts:
For the material and process development, different laboratory furnaces as well as relevant methods for analysis (TG, DSC, scanning electron microscop, optical microscope with heating device up to 1700 °C, X-Ray diffractometer, dilatometer) are available. For design and analysis, modern CAD and FEM systems (Ansys, Unigraphics) are used. For the component development, large furnaces for pyrolysis and siliconization (OPUS 900) are available, with which even large CMC structures up to 1m in length can be realized. The quality assurance system is based on extensive process control and documentation as well as on destructive and nondestructive testing methods (air and water coupled ultrasonic, computer tomography, lock in thermography, photogrammetry, sound emission)