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4/18/2010 | 2 MINUTE READ

News and product briefs: JEC Composites Show

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Product and technology news from Cytec, Lomold, 3B, Huntsman, Weber and VISTAGY.


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Cytec Engineered Materials (Tempe, Ariz.) showcased its new PRISM EP 2400 liquid infusion resin system. The one-part, toughened, 180°C cure epoxy is targeted to aerospace primary structure and “high-performance industrial” markets, says the company, and can be used with a wide range of reinforcements. With a novel toughening system and wide processing window, the resin reportedly delivers laminate properties equivalent to Cytec’s 977-2 prepreg preformance.

Lomold Group (Cape Town, South Africa) was the winner of the JEC Innovation award in the Transportation category for its long fiber thermoplastic (LFT) polypropylene shipping pallet. The highly complex, three-dimensional part is made in one shot, through a single gate up to 100 mm/3.9 inches in diameter. The large gate size minimizes shear and helps preserve fiber integrity; fiber length can reach 50 mm/1.9 inches, which gives the pallet very high mechanical properties and longevity, more than five times a traditional wood pallet. A multi-part steel mold designed by KHS Consulting (South Africa) and built by CLF Machinery Works in Taiwan allows molding of a complete pallet in 70 seconds. The company plans to start production in September, and will sell the molding technology as well as the parts.  

CompositesWorld had the opportunity to speak with Hughes Jacquemin, CEO of 3B the Fibreglass Co. (Battice, Belgium) regarding the company’s progress. He announced a new joint development agreement (JDA) with Nanocyl (Sambreville, Belgium) to develop unique carbon nanotube (CNT) sizings that both companies claim will enable breakthrough performance for thermoset and thermoplastic composites. The new Sizicyl CNT sizing products are expected to improve electrical and mechanical laminate properties, particularly for wind blade applications.

Huntsman Advanced Materials’ (The Woodlands, Texas) theme at the show was sustainability coupled with innovative research and development. The company highlighted its activities, including sustainable manufacturing practices such as smarter energy use, waste reduction and local sourcing, that improve its “green footprint.” Natural fibers were featured in many of the applications at the company’s booth, and marketing director Thierry Perchet predicts increasing natural fiber and bioresin usage in the coming years. New resin formulations include a toughened resin with nano-scale additives and a very fast-curing resin for resin transfer molding processes.

Weber Manufacturing Technologies Inc. (Midland, Ontario, Canada) exhibited a new part that it is manufacturing: nickel vapor deposition (NVD) metal erosion strips for leading edges, targeted to jet engine stator blades. The 0.010-inch/0.25-mm thick strips are produced on an aluminum mandrel, and bonded onto a composite fan blade, says the company.

VISTAGY (Waltham, Mass.) featured at its stand a composite gearbox for the Renault F1 racecar. Designed with VISTAGY's FiberSIM software, the gearbox features a cast titanium skeleton joined with 600 individual plies of carbon fiber fabric. The resulting structure is 80 percent composites by volume, but just 20 percent by weight. Renault says one of the biggest challenges was in managing the different thermal properties of the carbon fiber and the titanium.