Safety issues with advanced composite materials

Safety issues with advanced composite materials By Greg Mellema The last 25 years has seen a dramatic rise in the use of advanced composite materials on aircraft. Since these materials aren't as old and well-sorted-out as the metal technology...

Remember, these are generalities. There are so many different fiber and resin types out there that we can't possibly discuss them all here. When it comes to the issue of safety and composite materials, rumors abound. The only way to be sure you're adequately protected is to educate yourself. Understand how a substance can affect your body, read MSDS, make sure your organization has current exposure reports from an industrial hygienist, and communicate with your safety personnel to maintain a safe working environment.

Greg Mellema is an instructor with Abaris Training in Reno, Nevada. Abaris conducts training in repair, fabrication, and design of advanced composite aircraft structures. Mellema holds both an Airframe & Powerplant certificate as well as an Inspection Authorization (I.A.). He earned his B.S. degree in Professional Aeronautics from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University and is currently working on a double Master's degree in Aviation Safety and Aviation Management.

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