Newswise — Wichita State University's National Institute for Aviation Research has joined NASA's Advanced Composite Consortium (ACC), a public-private partnership focused on advancing knowledge about composite materials and improving the performance of future aircraft.

The ACC was established in 2015 in support of the Advanced Composites Project, part of the Advanced Air Vehicles Program of NASA's Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate. The project's goal is to reduce product development and certification timelines for composites infused into aeronautics applications.

The consortium is managed by the National Institute of Aerospace and also includes the Federal Aviation Administration, Aurora Flight Sciences, The Boeing Co., Collier Research, General Electric Aviation, Lockheed Martin Aeronautics, Orbital ATK, University of South Carolina McNair Center and United Technologies Corp.

"Our experience and understanding of composite material properties and certification processes will add to the already strong intellectual membership," said Royal Lovingfoss, associate director of NIAR's Composites and Advanced Materials Lab. "The collaborative experience will bring new ideas to the forefront and allow for a sharing of information that will benefit the aviation community as a whole."

Member organizations in the consortium participate in research focused on three areas: prediction of life and strength of composite structures, rapid inspection of composites and manufacturing process and simulation.

The consortium is finishing research projects associated with Phase 1 of the program, which were designed to perform assessments of technology available in the three focus areas and identify deficiencies and strengths of these technologies.

In Phase 2, starting in 2017, the consortium will move to extend the technology capabilities through 10 project areas that will develop specific improvements in predictive structural design analysis; inspection accuracy and prediction; and manufacturing techniques and computational tools.

"NASA is committed to transforming aviation through cutting-edge research and development," said Jaiwon Shin, associate administrator for NASA's Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate in Washington. "This partnership will help bring better composite materials into use more quickly and help maintain American leadership in aviation manufacturing."- - - - -The mission of Wichita State University is to be an essential educational, cultural and economic driver for Kansas and the greater public good. WSU enrolls about 14,500 students and offers more than 50 undergraduate degree programs in more than 150 areas of study in six undergraduate colleges. The Graduate School offers an extensive program including more than 40 master's degrees that offer study in more than 100 areas; a specialist in education degree; and doctoral degrees in applied mathematics; audiology; chemistry; communication sciences and disorders; human factors and community/clinical psychology; educational leadership; nursing practice; physical therapy; and aerospace, electrical, industrial and mechanical engineering. WSU's Innovation Campus ( is an interconnected community of partnership buildings, laboratories and mixed-use areas where students, faculty, staff, entrepreneurs and businesses have access to the university's vast resources and technology.

# # # # #Contact: Tracee Friess, director of communication, research and technology transfer, [email protected] or 316-978-5597.