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RMIT opens Australia’s first automated radial braiding facility

14 June 2017

RMIT University has opened Australia’s first automated radial braiding facility enabling research into the creation of novel materials and shapes, not possible using other processing techniques.

“Australian researchers now have access to technology that supports high-speed, precision and versatility to radially braid single or multiple filament types including carbon, metal, optical, natural, bio-inspired and bio-compatible fibres and filaments to create new materials with unique functional properties,” says Professor Adrian Mouritz, Executive Dean of RMIT’s School of Engineering.

“With the capability to braid over multiple length scales spanning nanofibres to millimeter-sized filaments, the facility provides the opportunity to develop materials with multiple functional properties with potential uses spanning many industry sectors including aerospace, automotive, military, fashion and textiles, and medical implants and prosthesis.

“The facility will also allow researchers to design, synthesize and analyse new types of fibrous materials and open the opportunity for fundamental new scientific insights into advanced materials.”

The technology was purchased with the assistance of an Australian Research Council grant of $240,000. While located at RMIT’s Sir Lawrence Wackett Aerospace Research Centre, the technology will be accessed by researchers from universities across Australia for both pure and applied projects, including industry collaborations.