Hawthorn Composites Receives Contract from Kratos

February 08 (2021

Hawthorn Composites was awarded a structural inlet duct manufacturing contract from Kratos Defense & Security Solutions, Inc. to provide twelve inlet ducts for the XQ-58A Valkyrie platform. Manufacturing for the structural inlet ducts began in October 2020 and will conclude by September 2021.

The twelve structural inlet ducts will be made using Smart Tooling’s shape memory polymer (SMP) tooling, combined with overbraiding from A&P Technology and resin infusion. This process includes using an automated overbraiding process to apply dry fiber to a rigid SMP Smart Tool that acts like a mandrel during cure. The dry fiber braid is then processed with a low-cost epoxy and cured using a vacuum-assisted resin transfer molding process (VARTM) in a conventional oven.

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