SPE ACCE calls for poster submissions, scholarship applications

The competition will be held during the ACCE at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Mich., U.S. September 4-6, 2019.
#sustainability #iacmi #biomaterials


Facebook Share Icon LinkedIn Share Icon Twitter Share Icon Share by EMail icon Print Icon

The organizing committee for the SPE Automotive Composites Conference & Expo (ACCE, Troy, Mich., U.S.) has issued an invitation to graduate, undergraduate, community college, and high school students to submit abstracts on innovative composites technologies, for automotive and ground transportation, for its tenth annual student poster scholarship competition. The competition will be held during the ACCE at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Mich., U.S. September 4-6, 2019. Judges who are industry experts, SPE board members, and members of the media will review all posters with student authors on the first day of the conference, September 4, 2019. First-, second-, and third-place awards will be presented to winners in graduate, undergraduate and high school categories during a special ceremony after lunch on the event’s second day, September 5, 2019.  

Students interested in participating in the scholarship competition should contact Dr. Uday Vaidya, ACCE student poster competition chair as well as chief technology officer, Institute for Advanced Composites Manufacturing Innovation (IACMI, Knoxville, Tenn., U.S.) and professor and governor’s chair – Advanced Composites Manufacturing at University of Tennessee-Knoxville via ACCEposters@speautomotive.com.  



Abstracts are due by July 1, 2019. Digital copies of posters are due by August 20, 2019, for pre-review by judges. Students will need to bring printed copies of their posters to the conference, which they can attend free of charge. All students in the competition will also receive a partial travel stipend and a shared hotel room provided by SPE, as well as free student membership in SPE. 

The poster template is online via http://speautomotive.com/acce-forms

Poster topics may include subjects such as: 

  • Automotive Composites
  • Composites and lightweight materials for trucks
  • Bio-composites
  • Nanocomposites
  • Glass, carbon and hybrid fibers
  • Thermoset and thermoplastic technologies
  • Recycling and green technologies
  • Multi-materials
  • Joining technologies 
  • Modeling and analysis of lightweight materials
  • CAFÉ standards and mandates
  • Cost-effective manufacturing
  • Use of advanced materials in innovative applications
  • Virtual prototyping and design
  • Microstructure, failure and fracture
  • Failure envelopes and theories
  • Additive manufacturing of composite 

Students and their posters are ranked according to the following criteria:

  • Content (student and poster demonstrate clarity of topic, objectives, and background); 
  • Motivation for research and technical relevance to conference theme; 
  • Methodology and approach to problem; 
  • Quality of proposed research results/findings; 
  • Conclusions are supported by information presented; 
  • Presentation (display aesthetics are pleasing and there is a logical flow between sections); 
  • Knowledgeable (presenter has a good grasp of the subject); 
  • Understandability (poster is effective even without student being present to explain it); and 
  • Overall rank vs. other posters and presenters. 



The organizing committee also invites graduate, undergraduate, and community college students to submit applications for three SPE ACCE scholarships and an additional award from the endowed scholarship funded in honor of the late Dr. Jackie Rehkopf, a long-time SPE ACCE volunteer and automotive composites expert.

Applications are due April 1, 2019, and winners will be announced prior to the 2019 SPE ACCE event, September 4- 6, 2019 at the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, Michigan (in the Metro-Detroit area).  

The three ACCE scholarships are $2,000 USD each.  Two of the scholarships (given annually since 2007) are for full-time graduate students, anywhere in the world, who are pursuing degrees in Polymer Science, Composites, Plastics or a related Engineering discipline. A third ACCE scholarship is available for a graduate or junior or senior undergraduate student pursuing similar academic programs at a university or college in the U.S. state of Michigan. In addition to a letter of recommendation from an advisor or mentor (and other SPE foundation requirements), students must provide a succinct 2-page essay explaining how their planned work will benefit polymer composites usage in the automotive or other ground-transportation industry. Winning students are invited to present their results in person at the next year’s SPE ACCE conference, September 9 – 11, 2020.

The Dr. Jackie Rehkopf endowed scholarship ($5,000 USD) will be awarded to undergraduate or graduate students studying engineering or science with plans to work in the field of transportation composites. If there are no qualified graduate applicants, two $2,500 USD awards may be awarded to suitable undergraduate applicants. As with the ACCE scholarships, a letter of recommendation from the student’s advisor/mentor (in addition to other SPE Foundation requirements) and a 2-page essay is required showing planned work and how it benefits composites usage in the automotive or other ground-transportation industry.  

Applications for ACCE, Rehkopf, and many other SPE scholarships are on the SPE Foundation website at http://www.4spe.org/Foundation.  Deadline for submission is April 1, 2019.  

For more information on the ACCE and Dr. Jackie Rehkopf Scholarships, contact: 


Related Topics


  • The matrix

    The matrix binds the fiber reinforcement, gives the composite component its shape and determines its surface quality. A composite matrix may be a polymer, ceramic, metal or carbon. Here’s a guide to selection.

  • The first commercial Type V composite pressure vessel

    Composites Technology Development's first commercial tank in the Type V category presages growth of filament winding in storage of compressed gases.

  • Advanced materials for aircraft interiors

    Applications aren't as demanding as airframe composites, but requirements are still exacting — passenger safety is key.