Presently there is a great diversity of individuals and organizations involved in generating and using fiber-reinforced composite materials (FRCM) data. Because of this, many engineers and scientists are interested in creating a computing system to facilitate their access and use of such data. In order for such a system to be built, information needs to be compiled on the requirements of a database, one of the key elements of such a computing environment. This paper attempts to help analysts and designers understand and develop a fully integrated FRCM database by providing an overview of important database design considerations and elements. The first main section of this paper discusses 1) the application programs now being used for the fabrication, design, manufacture, and testing of FRCM components; 2) the data flow among these programs; 3) the need for a database management system to overcome existing system shortcomings; and 4) the advantages of selecting the relational data model to improve the present handling of data. The other main section of the paper provides a methodology for designing a database using the relational data model and describes the specific content and structure of this database that is proposed to be used in the FRCM computing environment.

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