CompositesWorld and ITHEC partner for thermoplastic composites 3-day virtual event
With maximum interactivity, leading TPC event focuses on manufacturing and 3D printing forum powered by CW.
The International Conference and Exhibition on Thermoplastic Composites (ITHEC, Bremen, Germany) will be held online over three days instead of two for the first time. Every two years, ITHEC gathers the thermoplastic composites community and presents its latest global developments. For ITHEC 2020, both the conference and accompanying exhibition will be virtual due to the coronavirus pandemic, taking place at www.ithec.de.
Conference presentations from the morning are repeated in the afternoon to enable participation across all regions for each of the three days, with live demonstrations, masterclass and roundtable discussions during the noon session. Download the full program and timetable.
ITHEC’s digital event platform delivers maximum interactivity and functionality for all participants:
- All exhibitors, attendees and speakers can communicate directly per text or video chat
- Continuous interaction during sessions via chat, surveys and Q&A
- Online and video poster presentations with ability to vote for best in conference
- Virtual 1:1 meetings by appointment or instant video calls
- Digital matchmaking based on participant profiles and matching criteria, including chat and video call functions
- Networking of participants before, during and after the digital event
- Contact and document exchange via chat and scheduled or direct video calls
- Speed dating via 1:1 video call with automatic assignment based on matching criteria
ITHEC 2020 has been planned with more than 450 attendees and industry experts. “We are expecting more than 500 specialists from industry and research to attend this fifth ITHEC,” says Daniel Schäfer, the new Project Manager for ITHEC at CONGRESS BREMEN. Produced in partnership with MESSE BREMEN and the Fibre Institute at the University of Bremen (FIBRE) since 2012, ITHEC drew 400 attendees and 50 exhibitors in 2018. This year, the program includes 50 talks and 40 poster presentations on a wide range of applications from air and space travel to automotive and new technologies.
Companies and research institutions will again showcase their current developments in the accompanying exhibition, with more than 50 exhibitors already registered. "Total figures are not yet available because registration is still open," says Schäfer, “but ITHEC 2020 opens new opportunities because companies worldwide will be able to present their exhibits and machines live and interactively direct from their facilities via our virtual platform."
Advanced Thermoplastic Composite 3D Printing Forum and Roundtable
New this year within the ITHEC 2020 exhibition is the Advanced Thermoplastic Composite 3D Printing Forum, powered by CompositesWorld, where companies will showcase their latest developments in continuous fiber and industrial processes. An accompanying roundtable discussion on Oct. 15 at 12:15 pm and 6:15 pm Central European Time (6:15 am and 12:15 pm Eastern U.S.) will include leading 3D printing companies from the U.S. and Europe. After a brief introduction from each company, CompositesWorld will moderate this discussion, answering questions from attendees worldwide. Companies interested in participating in the exhibition and 3D Printing Forum can contact ITHEC staff at https://www.ithec.de/team.
Key themes: from 3D printing to rear car seats
"Key themes this year include aircraft structures and 3D printing, production processes and their optimization," says Schäfer. For example, a team from the German Aerospace Center (DLR, Augsburg) has been has developed a process that can achieve high impregnation quality for small installation spaces by using high-frequency sound waves. Potential applications range from the manufacture of continuous fiber-reinforced composites to integration in a 3D print head. "Companies and research institutes are continuing to investigate and develop 3D printing with ultrasound: it will continue to play an important role in the future," says Schäfer.
One-minute, one-piece rear car seat
Another topic is fiber-reinforced construction for vehicles. An expert team from Faurecia (Nanterre, France) and the IRT Jules Verne research institute (Bouguenais, France) has developed a composite rear seat structure manufactured in a single shot using an injection molding machine. Compared to conventional metal designs, manufacturing this carbon fiber-reinforced component reduces weight by almost a third as well as material costs, with a cycle time of less than a minute.
Next-generation aerospace programs demand higher temperatures for structural and hot-section components, fostering advances in thermoset resin chemistry.
Suppliers of thermoplastics and carbon fiber chime in regarding PEEK vs. PEKK, and now PAEK, as well as in-situ consolidation — the supply chain for thermoplastic tape composites continues to evolve.
Fiber-reinforced composite tooling, ceramic matrix composites (CMCs) and woven fiber composites are all now the realm of 3D printing.