The industry must move from a fundamental understanding of advanced textiles to material usage, says McIlhagger. “It will take more discussion about the composite manufacturing processes and materials in order to fully introduce 3-D wovens to the industry. This will essentially change the way we currently think about composite manufacturing.”

McIlhagger also believes the future of 3-D wovens will lean toward automated manufacturing to meet high-volume needs. “There are other industries out there, such as the textile industry in the Republic of Ireland, that have the knowledge to develop the type of automated machines we need,” he says. “As engineers, we have a lot to learn from the textile companies.”