NextCOMP Next Generation Fibre-Reinforced Composites

A Full Scale Redesign for Compression

NextCOMP is a 5 year £6.2m UKRI funded Programme Grant which began in July 2020 led by Professor Milo Shaffer at Imperial College London and Professor Richard Trask at University of Bristol, with numerous academic and industrial partners.

It focuses on improving the performance of composite materials in compression, looking to nature’s hierarchical composites such as wood and bone for inspiration as these perform particularly well in compression.  The NextCOMP  team are investigating and developing a new generation of synthetic hierarchical composites, with work being undertaken across 6 different but interrelated work streams.

NextCOMP researchers speculate that the new generation of hierarchical composites they develop will perform significantly better in compression than traditional composites. Discoveries made in NextCOMP could open further opportunities for advancing development of this new generation of composites to aid in solving  existing and future design challenges.

NextCOMP researchers in Bristol Composites Institute lab

The knowledge and commercial experience of the influential industrial partners involved in the project feeds into the research being undertaken by the team to maximise its impact and relevance in industry.  Our partners include Hexcel, Solvay, Victrex, Thomas Swan, The National Composites Centre, Centre for Processing, Airbus, BAE Systems, DSTL, GKN Aerospace and Vestas.

Academic partners University of Vienna and Deakin University along with academics from our External Advisory Board, namely Prof Veronique Michaud, Prof Leif Asp, Prof Ignaas Verpoest and Prof Joanna Aizenburg, are collaborating with us and provide scientific guidance and support to enable NextCOMP to fulfil its aims and objectives.

Some of the NextCOMP team

The NextCOMP team have numerous activities planned in the forthcoming months including an industry focused workshop, academic presentations and public engagement activities. We have several years remaining on the programme so expect to see and hear much more!

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