Image Number 2 for United States Patent #5281388.
Process for vacuum impregnation of a dry fiber reinforcement with a curable resin to produce a resin-fiber composite, by drawing a vacuum to permit flow of curable liquid resin into and through a fiber reinforcement to impregnate same and curing the resin-impregnated fiber reinforcement at a sufficient temperature and pressure to effect final curing. Both vacuum and positive pressure, e.g. autoclave pressure, are applied to the dry fiber reinforcement prior to application of heat and prior to any resin flow to compact the dry fiber reinforcement, and produce a resin-fiber composite of reduced weight, thickness and resin content, and improved mechanical properties. Preferably both a vacuum and positive pressure, e.g. autoclave pressure, are also applied during final curing.