In-Process Cure Monitoring of Specialty Material Coatings
We propose to develop and test a prototype TD-THz system and method for the non-contact, rapid, in-process cure monitoring of specialty material coatings. The instrumentation will determine the thickness and cure state both"dry"and"wet"coatings and predict final thickness from"wet"measurements. The system will consist of a rack mounted TD-THz control unit which is connected to a miniature TD-THz reflection sensor via a flexible umbilical mounted onto a robot arm within a paint booth. The fiber optic coupled TD-THz technology is highly suitable, as the sensors are small, light weight, and freely positionable. In-process monitoring is desirable when tight thickness tolerances are required, but difficult, because the coating is uncured. By measuring in-process, the application can be adjusted, and waiting to cure and sanding can be avoided. The TD-THz thickness and cure state measurement offers several advantages: stand-off distances of>30 cm possible; coating thickness from<1 mil to>1000 mils; 100 Hz or greater measurement rate; measurement from conducting and non-conductive surfaces; non-ionizing radiation; no requirement for a reference surface; measurement on wet or dry coating; measurement of thickness of multiple layers; measurement of cure through spectroscopy; and high precision and accuracy.
Small Business Information at Submission:
2925 Boardwalk Ann Arbor, MI -
Number of Employees: