Shape Machining unveils carbon fiber suspension links

The company has designed, manufactured and successfully tested a carbon fiber suspension link for a high-end automotive OEM.


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automotive composites

Source | Shape Machining Ltd.

Shape Machining Ltd. (Oxfordshire, U.K.), says it has designed, manufactured and successfully tested a carbon fibre suspension link for a high-end automotive OEM.

The design uses ShapeTex and epoxy thermoset resins technologies to make a part that can be pressed in very short cycle times. According to Shape, the advantage of this technique over a formed aluminium part is a 45% weight savings.

The company’s ShapeTex brand offers optimized carbon fiber preforms for a range of uses. The ability to lay and align fibers with a high degree of accuracy and with very few geometrical constraints results in composite parts that are optimized for strength, stiffness and efficiency that is just not possible with traditional fabric-based carbon fiber. Shape says benefits of its ShapeTex preforms include maximum structural performance, minimum material waste and maximum manufacturing efficiency.

Shape founder and chief technical officer Peter McCool, says “This is a fantastic combination of technologies that we have developed, in-house, to exploit the growing market sector for advanced structural composite components in the automotive and aerospace sectors.”

Shape provided all the engineering, design, tooling and manufacturing services to complete the project.

McCool added “By placing fiber only where it is needed, we create very efficient structures that can save a significant amount of weight for our customers.”

Shape has successfully tested the suspension link parts to destruction and says they consistenly meet or exceed all the targets. The technology is the intellectual property of Shape and the company is looking to adapt it for other automotive companies who have significant weight savings requirements and reduced un-sprung mass targets.

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