Melding is an efficient three step composite joining process that involves the selective cure of composite adherends before the final adhesive joint is created using the adherends own resin system. Melding does not require many of the processes and compromises associated with conventional techniques like adhesive bonding and mechanical fastening.
The Taguchi design of experiments technique was used to optimise three melded joint factors for a unidirectional epoxy prepreg material. The performance of the joint was evaluated using tensile and flexural strength as well as flexural modulus. It was found that not having a step for every ply in the joint was the most influential factor affecting joint performance. This was due to the differing failure modes induced by this factors various levels, which varied the amount of fibre breakage at failure.