CAMX 2014 award winners

CAMX 2014 organizers offered two awards programs at tis inaugural trade show in Orlnado, Fla: the Awards for Composites Excellence (ACE) and the CAMX Awards. Here's a sketch of the results.

CAMX offered two awards programs, the Awards for Composites Excellence (ACE) and the CAMX Awards. ACE has been around for many years, CAMX Awards are new. ACE winners cover six categories, two each for design, manufacturing and market growth. CAMX Awards are given for two categories, collaboration and teamwork, and unsurpassed innovation. There was a double-winner this year: Composite Panel Systems LLC won an ACE in Infinite Possibility Market Growth, as well as a CAMX Award for unsurpassed innovation.

ACE Design: Innovation in Green Composites Design Award: Blackbird Ukulele, submitted by Blackbird Guitars. Blackbird’s Clara is a concert-sized composite ukulele, fabricated from Ekoa, a lighter-than-carbon, renewable flax/ bioresin prepreg developed by Blackbird and Lingrove (San Francisco, Calif.).

ACE Design: Most Creative Application Award: Stranded Composite Core for High-Voltage Transmission Conductors, submitted by Celanese Corp. (Irving, Texas) Celanese Corp. and Southwire Co. LLC (Carrollton, Ga.) have worked together to create an innovative High Tensile, Low Sag (HTLS) high-voltage overhead transmission conductor, using a continuous thermoplastic carbon fiber-reinforced composite core to replace steel-reinforced conductors. The composite assembly is the strength member for the overhead conductor. The composite core consists of seven Celstran CFR-TPR continuous carbon fiber-reinforced/ polyphenylene sulfide (PPS) thermoplastic composite rods.

ACE Manufacturing: Equipment and Tooling Innovation Award: Near Dripless Resin Impregnation for Filament Winding, submitted by TSE Industries Inc. (Clearwater, Fla.) TSE has developed a new method of reinforcement impregnation during filament winding. This method not only minimizes process waste, but also maximizes the effective impregnation of reinforcement strands using minimal quantities of resin. TSE’s patented technology ensures better laminate quality through consistent impregnation. The near dripless applicator helps optimize resin impregnation, consistently providing a 70 to 80 percent glass-to-resin ratio.

ACE Manufacturing: Material and
Process Innovation Award: 3-D Printing Continuous Strand Carbon Fiber, Glass Fiber and Kevlar Composites, submitted
by MarkForged. See description under demonstrations.

ACE Market Growth: Composites Sustainability Award: Lightweight Composite Air Cargo Container, submitted by Cargo Composites (Charleston, S.C.). Cargo Composites’ AeroBox is a lightweight 58-kg/123-lb
air cargo container used in the belly of wide-body aircraft to transport baggage, mail and cargo. The low weight of this unit saves approximately $1,250 per year in fuel and 7,800 kg/17,196 lb of CO2 emissions compared to the 82-kg/181-kg aluminum container it replaces. The thermoplastic composite honeycomb panels not only produce a lighter structure, but greatly improve durability. Repair rates of this material in a rough handling environment are one-quarter those of aluminum, leading to a lower lifecycle cost. The estimated annual total fuel savings for the 18,000 containers now flying worldwide is more than 25 million liters/6.6 million gal and CO2 savings are 1,476 metric tons/3.25 million lb.

ACE Market Growth: Infinite Possibility for Market Growth Award: Epitome Quality Foundation Walls, submitted by Composite Panel Systems LLC (Eagle River, Wis.). Composite Panel Systems LLC’s Epitome Quality Foundation Walls are a composite alternative to traditional concrete residential foundations. The sandwich panel construction of Epitome foundation walls provides the homeowner with a warmer, drier and healthier living space (R-16.5 insulation value), as well as improved flexibility to modify or finish the basement. For the builder, Epitome foundation walls combine structure, integrated stud cavities for mechanicals, top plate and damp proofing into a single step. Further, the builder can now install a typical foundation in less than two hours.

CAMX Combined Strength Award: NASA-Boeing Composite Cryotank Technologies & Demonstration Team, submitted by NASA Glenn Research. NASA Glenn Research submitted the NASA Composite Cryotank Technology Demonstrator. NASA collaborated with Boeing to design, fabricate and test an all-composite cryogenic fuel tank for launch vehicles, paving the way for lower-cost access to space. These designs achieved a 30 percent weight savings and
a 25 percent cost savings, allowing insertion of higher mass payloads to low-Earth orbit (LEO) and beyond.

CAMX Unsurpassed Innovation Award: Epitome Quality Foundation Walls, submitted by Composite Panel Systems LLC. See description, above.