Tcast2 is a FORTRAN computer program that accelerates the setup of a process in which a slurry containing metal particles and a polymeric binder is cast, to a thickness regulated by a doctor blade, onto fibers wound on a rotating drum to make a “green” precursor of a metal-matrix/fiber composite tape. Before Tcast2, setup parameters were determined by trial and error in time-consuming multiple iterations of the process. In Tcast2, the fiber architecture in the final composite is expressed in terms of the lateral distance between fibers and the thickness-wise distance between fibers in adjacent plies. The lateral distance is controlled via the manner of winding. The interply spacing is controlled via the characteristics of the slurry and the doctor- blade height. When a new combination of fibers and slurry is first cast and dried to a green tape, the shrinkage from the wet to the green condition and a few other key parameters of the green tape are measured. These parameters are provided as input to Tcast2, which uses them to compute the doctor-blade height and fiber spacings needed to obtain the desired fiber architecture and fiber volume fraction in the final composite.

This program was written by Henry C. de Groh III of Glenn Research Center. For further information, access the Technical Support Package (TSP) free on-line at under the Software category.

Inquiries concerning rights for the commercial use of this invention should be addressed to

NASA Glenn Research Center
Commercial Technology Office
Attn: Steve Fedor
Mail Stop 4–8
21000 Brookpark Road
Ohio 44135.

Refer to LEW-17323.

NASA Tech Briefs Magazine

This article first appeared in the February, 2003 issue of NASA Tech Briefs Magazine.

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