- Project plans
- Project activities
- Legislation and standards
- Industry context
Last edited 25 Apr 2017
Modernising composite materials regulations
‘Modernising composite materials regulations’, published by the University of Southampton, claims that inappropriate standards and regulations are holding back an approach that could be worth £4bn by 2030 if ‘barriers to innovation’ were removed'.
The first-of-its-kind study was carried out by a multi-disciplinary team from the University of Southampton, and its findings are supported by a number of leading organisations, including the Composites Leadership Forum and Composites UK.
The report recognises that the UK is a global leader in the research and development of composite materials and structures, but points out that bringing new products to market could be made much easier.
It proposes modernising the current regulations to enable industry to migrate from current systems of assurance, based on material ‘equivalence’, to a performance-based system. This would harmonise the regulatory regime for composite materials across all sectors, and galvanize manufacturing in the UK.
“Advanced polymer composite materials have a huge potential to shape the modern world. The use of composites in aerospace and automobile design is now the norm, but they have much broader potential for use in other sectors such as in building and bridge construction, railway and rail infrastructure, as well as marine and offshore. In aerospace alone, 52% by weight of the latest generation of aircraft are now composed of composite materials.”
Professor Simon Quinn, director of the university’s Research Institute for Industry (RiFi) and the lead researcher of the paper, said:
“In the UK there is currently very limited coordination and centralisation of the codes and standards data associated with new composite materials. There is neither a coherent development of certified testing facilities, nor a formal process for different sectors to share information and best practice. These factors have reduced productivity, discouraged research and development and innovation, and significantly increased the time to market for new composite products.”
 Find out more
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
Featured articles and news
From frost damage to sulphate attack, common causes of defects in brickwork.
Precautions to take when making advance payments.
Helping communities recover from disasters and protecting them before they occur.
Instrumentation for critical healthcare environments.
Case study in the use of soft landings at the University of the West of England.
Richard Rogers wins is the AIA’s highest annual honour.
A quick introduction to a healthier and more sustainable form of construction.
The structural feasibility of modular high-rise buildings.
BRE conference on ways of providing and maintaining quality indoor environments.
CDBB publish foundational definitions and values to guide the development of the National Digital Twin.
Despite the reduction in staffing, most users remain satisfied with the service.
We run through the top 37 styles in history - but how many would you recognise?