CompositesWorld News for Jan. 22, 2020
Thermoplastic composites incorporated into vehicle seatback concept
Covestro’s Maezio carbon fiber-reinforced thermoplastic composites were used to develop a lightweight, sustainable seatback concept for a Chinese car manufacturer.
Source | Covestro
Covestro (Leverkusen, Germany) announced on Jan. 14 that it has partnered with the Research and Development Center of Guangzhou Automobile Group Co. Ltd. (GAC R&D Center; Guangzhou, China) to develop a lightweight composite seat back for the car manufacturer’s latest electric concept car, the ENO.146.
The ENO.146 is designed to be a highly aerodynamically efficient vehicle, with a drag coefficient of only 0.146 and a New European Driving Cycle (NEDC) range of 1,000 kilometers. Efforts to reduce vehicle weight and increase sustainability have resulted in the selection of Covestro’s Maezio carbon fiber-reinforced thermoplastic composite (CFRTP) material for the backrests of the concept car’s front seats. Compared to typical metal constructions, the CFRTP seat backrest results in estimated weight savings of up to 50%.
“Seats in the passenger compartment are an ideal target for weight savings, as they are among the heaviest parts there,” says Lisa Ketelsen, head of Covestro’s thermoplastic composites business. “Fiber-reinforced composites are the ideal material for lightweight automotive construction, but Maezio can further simplify molding and streamline the manufacturing process.”
According to Covestro, fittings and other attachments add to the complexity of production and assembly for seats with metal backrests. Because Maezio is a thermoplastic material, parts and functions can be consolidated by injection molding processing. Functional structures are incorporated into the mold for shaping the backrest, reducing the number of parts and materials.
Source | Covestro
The backrest also needed to meet the aesthetic and sustainability goals of the vehicle interior, which was designed with green colors and patterns reminiscent of nature and to incorporate sustainable or recyclable materials. The Maezio material is able to be cut and shaped into the desired marble-like pattern, fitting aesthetic requirements, and can be reused at the end of its service life, which suited the team’s sustainability needs.
“Mobility trends such as electrification and autonomous driving are redefining the role and function of car interiors,” says Zhang Fan, vice president of the GAC R&D Center. “There is a growing need for material solutions that are lightweight and sustainable while opening up ways to create new user experiences ranging from visual to tactile feedback.”
The vehicle recently made its debut at the Guangzhou International Automobile Exhibition.
Employment Opportunity: Senior Applications Engineer, Materia
Materia is seeking a Senior Applications Engineer for advanced composites applications.
Materia (Pasadena, Calif., U.S.) is seeking a Senior Applications Engineer to lead the engineering, processing project support and technical project management required for new customers to adopt Materia Proxima resins in advanced composite applications.
Essential Duties and Responsibilities:
- Serve as the engineering expert that supports new customers and development projects for advanced composite applications in major industries using pultrusion, filament winding, and HP-RTM/C-RTM processes.
- Develop process and manufacturing recommendations that enable customer adoption of Materia products.
- Collaborate closely with customer engineering teams to facilitate successful technology transfer and process scaleup.
- Coordinate and execute product trials and demonstrations at customer facilities.
- Work closely with colleagues to make test samples and provide technical feedback needed for developing new or improved resin processes and/or formulations.
- Maintain careful records, produce reports and other documents to meet technology dissemination, patent protection, and/or quality control needs.
- Work with colleagues to manage and maintain facility organization and safety.
Qualifications and Experience:
- B.S. in engineering, material science or similar. Consideration will also be given to qualified individuals with a Certified Composites Technician Degree (CCT).
- 7+ years of relevant technical experience.
- Thorough understanding and experience with pultrusion processes and equipment for liquid thermoset resins is preferred; experience with HP-RTM, C-RTM and filament winding is a plus.
- Prior experience with direct customer interactions in a technical role
- Demonstrated technical problem-solving ability.
- Significant hands on experience and technical background related to working in laboratories and/or manufacturing environments.
- Strong oral and written communication skills.
- Good project and time management skills.
- Travel requirement: 25-50% expected (domestic and international).
- Location: Pasadena, Calif., U.S.
To submit an application, visit https://materiainc.applicantpro.com.
Evonik's VESTALITE S curing agents win automotive award
Evonik’s epoxy hardener for use in SMCs for automotive applications won IALTA’s 2019 Automotive Lightweight Green Technology Award.
Battery case based on VESTALITE S. Source | Evonik
Evonik (Parsippany, N.J., U.S.) announced on Jan. 7 that its Crosslinkers Business Line has received award recognition from the International GREEN Auto Lightweight Technology Alliance (IALTA) for its VESTALITE S epoxy hardener for use with sheet molding compounds (SMC).
With the annual Automotive Lightweight Green Technology Award, IALTA recognizes technologically innovative companies that have made outstanding contributions to the development of innovative international automotive lightweight and green technology applications. The award recognizes technologies that are significantly beneficial for vehicle energy-saving, emission-reduction and safety as well as the application of lightweight vehicle material. The 2019 award was presented to Evonik at an event in Hefei, China in December 2019.
Evonik’s VESTALITE S curing agents have been developed for use with epoxy SMC materials in automotive applications, designed to meet increasingly stringent requirements for both lightweight design and vehicle indoor air quality. VESTALITE S is said to improve the technical properties and workability of high-performance SMCs for use in e-mobility applications and automotive lightweight construction.
“VESTALITE S curing agents in combination with epoxy resins result in SMC materials that are quick and easy to process for structural lightweight applications with minimal emission values,” says Dr.-Ing. Leif Ickert, who is responsible for marketing of composites and adhesives in Evonik’s Crosslinkers business line.
ITHEC 2020 call for papers by Feb. 15
Premier thermoplastic composites conference features enlarged exhibition and new Advanced Thermoplastic Composite 3D Printing Forum, powered by CompositesWorld.
ITHEC 2020, 5th International Conference and Exhibition on Thermoplastic Composites, October 13-14 in Bremen, Germany is accepting abstracts regarding cutting-edge topics in thermoplastic composites by February 15. The organizers request a one-page abstract from engineers, scientists and industry experts working in the field of high-performance thermoplastic composites, as well as related manufacturing technologies and applications.
Growth in thermoplastic composites, new 3D printing Forum
ITHEC was launched in 2012 to focus on the latest developments in high-performance thermoplastic composites in aerospace, automotive, transport, energy and industrial applications. The event has shown continuous, double-digit growth, including more than 40% for ITHEC 2018, which featured 370 conference delegates in a premium, two-day program including: 2 keynote lectures, 30 presentations and 20 research & development poster sessions. More than 50 exhibitors also presented their latest products and services.
With 65% of participants from industry, ITHEC 2018 underlined the industrial relevance of this conference and the insight it offers into materials and processes that make high-performance composites more competitive for sustainable, high-volume production.
ITHEC 2020 will continue to support this expansion of thermoplastic composites across a wide range of markets, featuring an enlarged exhibition and a new educational and networking experience: the Advanced Thermoplastic Composite 3D Printing Forum, powered by CompositesWorld.
Come and meet the leading international specialists to share expertise and to strengthen business cooperation and opportunities!
SGL Carbon to produce carbon fiber composite air taxi landing gear
SGL Carbon will begin serial production of its ultra-light composite landing gears in early 2021.
Design for air taxi landing skids developed with carbon fiber composites. Source | SGL Carbon
SGL Carbon (Weisbaden, Germany) reported on Jan. 20 that it will begin serial production of air taxi landing gear made from braided carbon fiber material early next year. The landing skids will be installed in around 500 air taxis worldwide over the next two years, the company says.
The 2-meter-wide by 1.5-meter-wide ultra-light landing skids will weigh less than 3 kilograms, making them about 15% lighter than a similar component made from aluminum. SGL Carbon says lightweighting is particularly important for increasing potential flight time capacity of the electric motor-powered air taxis.
The landing gear was developed in collaboration with customer experts and specialists from SGL Carbon. The carbon fibers for the component are produced at the SGL Carbon plant in Muir of Ord, Scotland. The final part is being manufactured at the SGL Carbon site in Innkreis, Austria.
“With with our landing gear, we help to shape this very new, promising application of manned, autonomous civil aviation. This involvement also demonstrates our wide range of services. From engineering, to prototype manufacture, to serial production with our own materials — all of our competences along the entire value chain made a contribution to the project,” says Dr. Andreas Erber, head of the aerospace segment of the Composites — Fibers & Materials business unit at SGL Carbon.