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4/26/2019

Toray aerospace prepreg optimized for vacuum-assisted pressure molding

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Toray has developed a new aerospace-grade prepreg designed for use in a novel out-of-autoclave, vacuum-assisted pressure molding process.

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Toray Industries Inc. (Tokyo, Japan) reports that it has developed a new carbon fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) prepreg optimized for use in primary structural aerospace components that can be molded using an out-of-autoclave (OOA) vacuum-assisted pressure molding process. The company says it will expand this technology to exploit demand for high-performance CFRP components with low processing cost in various applications including aircraft, vehicles and general industrial use.

The vacuum-assisted pressure molding technology, says Toray, was developed in 2018. The company says the new prepreg, enabled by a newly developed novel matrix resin, has mechanical performance — compression strength after impact and tensile strength — equivalent to a primary structure fabricated using existing prepreg technology and autoclave curing.

Toray reports that a test panel (see photo) molded with the new prepreg and pressure-molding process has porosity comparable to that achievable with an autoclave. Further, the company says the panel can meet “strict quality control standards for aircraft components.”

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