The MicroWires are composite materials themselves, they consist of metallic nucleus and glass coating. It is a passive, unpowered element. To “power” it – enable sensing and obtain real-time live data – a set of coils (powered, active element) and electronics are placed within the range of 10 cm and allow contactless sensing. They are simply embedded between composite layers in the production process, without causing any material flows, or adding almost no additional weight MicroWires can be easily introduced into composites such as carbon fiber composites, glass fiber, ceramic composites, plastic composites, etc…
The main advantages are to give you control over:
- Each part of the production process (e.g. to measure temperature locally not only on the surface but also in between layers)
- Random inspections and defect detections
- Real-time live data about the current state of the composite (up to ten thousand times per second resolution)
How does it work?
MicroWire sensors are magnetic. To sense them, they generate an AC magnetic field (triangual or other) with excitation coil. The coil is then powered with a few milliAmperes, unless it is present in a noisy magnetic or electric fields. The magnetic response from the MicroWires in terms of a magnetization change, is sensed with another pick up/sensing coil.
Output from the sensing coil includes signals from magnetic and electric noises present in the vicinity of the sensing coil during the measurements. Signal obtained needs to be filtered out of noises and also amplified (The signal can be obtained from a maximum distance up to 10cm.).
Filtered and amplified signal is digitalised in MCU (Nucleo or Arduino chip) and ready for data post-processing in customer’s preferred software.
Coils are directly connected to the electronics, while electronics digitalize the received data, through USB, or using Bluetooth / Wi-Fi / SigFox, … The digitalised data are then sent where you need them for further processing.
The RVmagnetics’ MicroWires provides an opportunity to create self-monitored composites, while reducing the likelihood of material failure, and optimization of the production process by minimizing material and production costs and also accelerating processes (composite decking, bonding, etc.) without risking cracks or other failures.
RVmagnetics – Smart Composites
In addition, combining AI with live data brings will increase safety drastically, and provide data on remaining useful lifetime (RUL) for the structure. The financial gain lays in reducing the frequency of maintenance tasks, transforming the preventive and reactive maintenance into predictive maintenance.
While current structural health monitoring methods are valuable in detecting and preventing potential damages in the production process or post-production RVmagnetics strive for safety, real-time measurements and industry transformation towards the digital. MicroWire sensing technology provides a gateway to real-time data from places that have been impossible to access thus far.
How it’s made: Disover the MicroWire production process
Glass-coated microwires are composite materials that consist of a metallic nucleus covered by glass shielding. They are prepared by drawing and rapid quenching of molten alloys and glass. They have unique properties in terms of the magnetization process as well as in terms of the mechanical properties. This makes them suitable for sensing various physical quantities in different engineering applications.
RVmagnetics microwire production
Companies: RVmagnetics, a.s.