| 1 MINUTE READ

Tuplus introduces carbon fiber-reinforced polycarbonate suitcase

The highly durable suitcase, featuring front and back shells made with Covestro’s Maezio polycarbonate composite, was designed for low-cost production, high-volume production.

Share

Facebook Share Icon LinkedIn Share Icon Twitter Share Icon Share by EMail icon Print Icon
Tuplus suitcase using Covestro carbon fiber

Source | Covestro

High-end Chinese luggage brand Tuplus has released a new carbon fiber suitcase under its “Core” lineup. The 25-inch model, currently only available for sale in China, features an aluminum and magnesium alloy structural frame, and front and back shells made of Maezio polycarbonate-based composites from Covestro (Shanghai, China).

Tuplus says composites use increases the suitcase’s sturdiness during natural wear and tear, while also elevating design and style. Tuplus has performed safety tests on the suitcase, including drop and tumble tests and falling ball impact tests, noting improved impact resistance compared to conventional aluminum suitcase shells. Further, the carbon fiber is unidirectional, for aesthetic and design simplicity.

Despite the dramatic decrease in travel due to the coronavirus pandemic, Tuplus believes the travel industry will bounce back as travel restrictions are eased globally. “People haven’t changed in that they still want to travel, but we need to adapt to the new times ahead and to the new needs of tourists to feel safer,” says Catherine Jiang, president and CEO of Tuplus. “High-quality materials are always at the heart of our design concept because we know our customers rely on them for travel safety and security.”

Tuplus notes that, while carbon fiber luggage tends to be hand-crafted, thus driving up cost and making it difficult to scale, the use of Covestro’s Maezio thermoplastics allows fabrication to be done with thermoforming, which increases efficiency and yield rates and reduces cycle times. Further, the company says the design of its front and back shell structures allow composite sheets to be integrated directly into the production line and assembled after cutting and coating, thereby maximizing throughput.

“We believe our thermoplastic composite solutions will accelerate the adoption of carbon fiber composites in luggage,” says Lisa Ketelsen, head of Covestro’s thermoplastic composites business. “Meanwhile, we’re also working on thermoformed, 3D luggage cover solutions to make composites available for a wide range of suitcases.”

RELATED CONTENT

  • 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 making of glass fiber

    The old art behind this industry’s first fiber reinforcement is explained,with insights into new fiber science and future developments.

  • The making of carbon fiber

    A look at the process by which precursor becomes carbon fiber through a careful (and mostly proprietary) manipulation of temperature and tension.