Launch structures


The latest generation of launch vehicles and crew capsules utilize TenCate's advanced composites. TenCate materials enable cost-effective fabrication of large composite structure using state of the art out-of-autoclave processing.  Further, TenCate materials possess long out times, low moisture absorption, optimized tack levels and deliver low void content under low pressure processing.  The world's leading and emerging rocket manufacturers specify TenCate materials to ensure mission success.  With a comprehensive product portfolio of thermosets, thermoplastics, chopped fiber bulk molding compounds combined with an array of resin and fiber choices, TenCate is the material supplier of choice.

Material Solutions

TenCate’s TC275-1 out-of-autoclave/vacuum-bag-only capable prepregs are ideal for use in large barrel assemblies, inner stage structure, cryo tanks and heat shields. TenCate's TC275-1 features high resistance to moisture, good toughness, and excellent capability to deliver low void parts under vacuum cure processing.  This product is available in unitape, slit tape and fabric prepreg forms.

High Temperature Applications

High-temperature materials like TenCate’s TC420 and RS-8HT are used for engines, heat shields and ablative areas. TenCate high temperature materials were used on the heat shields and back shell structure of NASA’s Orion crew vehicle, replacing titanium for both cost and weight savings.

Complex Parts Molded from Chopped Fiber

TenCate compression moulded parts are used to replace metal or composite parts to achieve both cost and weight savings.  Compression moulding enables the design and manufacture of complex composite parts. TenCate’s CCS Composites group has turnkey manufacturing whereby they can optimize the part, design the tooling, and then fabricate these parts in cost-effective, high volumes. Parts can be made with integral stiffeners and fasteners, as well as with lightning strike foils on the surface. Visit TenCate’s compression moulded parts gallery to see more images. TenCate's CCS Composites group helps mold ideas into reality.  To learn about a new material form for prototypes and limited production runs, read the technical paper on TenCate's chopped fiber billet stock.   It provides the benefits of composites while allowing rapid "machining to shape" for your final parts. Access TenCate's most recent technical paper: Compression Molded Billet: Advantages and Usages.  A one-page overview provides an example of a complex antenna housing made via machined billet stock.

Please access our Satellite/Space/Launch Vehicle brochure for more information.

Featured product

TC275-1 is a dual cure toughened epoxy prepreg designed to facilitate composite part construction with low pressure or vacuum pressure cures. This resin system features a 14-day tack life and 21-day out time to allow the construction of thick or larger composite structure. TC275-1 may be cured at a lower temperature of 275°F/135°C or can be cured at 350°F/177°C for higher temperature service.

Launch Structure Featured