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COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010 – show preview


Reinforced Plastics

Reinforced Plastics takes a look at what's happening at this year's show, which is being held in Essen, Germany, on 14-16 September.

COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010 is organised by Reed Exhibitions in partnership with the European composites industry association EuCIA and Reinforced Plastics magazine. The International AVK Conference runs alongside the exhibition on 13-14 September. In this preview we take a look at what exhibitors will be highlighting during the show. (Companies are listed in alphabetical order.)
 


3A Composites Core Materials
Stand number G56, Hall 10-11
Website: www.3acomposites.com

3A Composites Core Materials will present the world of core materials and its well-known brands AIREX® and BALTEK®. 3A Composites Core Materials (formerly known as Alcan Composites Core Materials) will exhibit at COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010 together with its German distributor Gaugler & Lutz.

The company will present its DRIVEN by ECO-LOGIC and the Hybrid Core Concept® with the Hybrid Core Calculator.

3A Composites says its Hybrid Core Concept® comprises the widest portfolio of core materials, the necessary know-how and the toolset that allow customers to tailor their sandwich solution to ultimate performance. Based on three different optimisation – criteria which are price, properties and sustainability – the optimal sandwich design can be calculated with the Hybrid Core Calculator. A life cycle analysis (LCA) shows the total environmental impact of a product throughout the different phases of a product‘s life cycle. Each phase of the life cycle consumes resources and may generate reusable output (recycling). The sum of all input minus all reusable output is the environmental footprint of a product.

3A Composites Core Materials is a global organisation with operations in Europe, North America, Ecuador and China and is part of 3A Composites, a division of Schweiter Technologies AG.


3B
Stand number F13, Hall 10-11
Website: www.3b-fibreglass.com

3B, a manufacturer of glass fibre products for the reinforcement of thermoplastics and thermosets, will showcase its Advantex® and HiPer-tex™products in high performance pressure vessel and ballistic applications at COMPOSITES EUROPE.

“We were extremely pleased to exhibit at Essen," says Hugues Jacqumain, CEO of 3B. "We have much to offer with our Advantex and Hipertex products as well as the unique technical experience we have gained in key, high performance applications. We are looking forward to welcoming customers on our stand and to discussing how we can develop product solutions matching their needs.”

3B's focus at the show will centre on its direct rovings and continuous filament mat (CFM) product lines, including:

  • Advantex Direct Rovings SE 1500 used as an input for weaving and knitting operations for higher stiffness and enhanced fatigue performance in epoxy laminates;
  • Advantex Direct Roving SE 8400 LS (Low Seeds) specifically developed for composite high voltage electrical insulators rods and designed for pultrusion processes;
  • Advantex CFM M8615 used as an infusion media for close mould applications in wind energy turbine blade applications;
  • Advantex CFM M8643 for pultrusion processes for wide, long and heavy parts as well as narrow and complex profiles;
  • Advantex rovings for high pressure cylinder applications such as CNG (compressed natural gas) cylinders (Advantex rovings are now approved to be used for high pressure vessels that meet ECE110, ISO 11439 and NGV-2 standards); and
  • HiPer-tex B15 rovings designed for hard composite armour applications such as composite blast panels, ballistic panels, and spall liners for military and law enforcement vehicles, security vehicles and naval vessels.

Compared to E-glass, 3B reports that HiPer-tex glass fibre delivers overall superior performance: 30% higher strength; 17% higher stiffness; 45% higher strain energy; 10 times greater fatigue resistance; and 30% lower coefficient of linear thermal expansion.
 


AKPA Chemicals
Stand number D08, Hall 10-11
Website: www.akpakimya.com

Turkish company AKPA specialises in the production of organic peroxides, initiators and accelerators for the composites and plastics industries. The company is introducing two new products for phthalate free polymerisation systems; AKPEROX® A50-PF and A60-PF are now available to customers worldwide.

Phthalates are widely used as plasticisers in chemicals industry and today they are being phased out of products in many countries, especially in the USA, EU and in Turkey, because of health concerns. For this reason, AKPA offers two new products called A50-PF and A60-PF that can replace existing A50 and A60 grades. There will be no change at gel-cure performance and end products’ characteristics except no phthalate content.
 


Armacell
Stand D53, Hall 10-11
Website: www.armacell-core-foams.com

A ‘green’ plastic? What sounds like a contradiction in terms is in fact already part of our everyday lives. PET is 100% recyclable and is fed back into the economic cycle as a high-quality resource. PET beverage bottles, for example, are recycled in the form of polyester fibres which are then used to make products such as fleece textiles or new bottles. Armacell is now able to manufacture foam cores, which are used in transport, wind turbine construction or shipbuilding, from the recyclate of PET bottles.

Armacell is adopting the cradle-to-cradle principle. This concept is aimed at avoiding waste by recycling materials in a closed loop and, therefore, continuously reusing them. However, this recyclability (and thus the conservation of natural resources) is not the only advantage of the polymer. Its low weight makes PET an ideal material for lightweight construction applications. PET foam cores are extremely energy efficient because they require less input power than conventional materials. Furthermore, ArmaFORM PET foams have high mechanical strength in combination with residual flexibility and excellent fatigue resistance. They are also high temperature resistant and withstand short-term curing temperatures of up to +180 °C. They also display very slight variances in density of ±5 kg/m3 and, unlike natural core materials, their availability is ensured.

Typical areas of application for ArmaFORM PET foam cores are marine applications (boat hulls, cabin interiors), transport (carriage body, interior panelling in trains, buses, trucks and cars) and wind turbine construction (rotor blades, nacelles). Whereas the disposal of rotor blades made of conventional composite materials presents problems which will become a real challenge for wind turbine operators in the coming years, PET foams are 100% recyclable.
 


ASSOCOMPOSITI
Stand number G03, Hall 10-11
Website: www.assocompositi.it

ASSOCOMPOSITI is the Italian Industry Association for Composite Materials. Its mission is to promote the knowledge and use of composite materials in Italy and to promote actions at the international level.

ASSOCOMPOSITI is member of the European Industry Composite Association (EuCIA) and of FEMS (Federation of European Materials Societies). It is also partner of the Italian Rubber and Plastic Federation. Through this cooperation Assocompositi is now able to offer to its members the following services:

  • information and assistance on national and EU regulations;
  • technical and legal assistance for innovative project development;
  • information and advice on trade union issues;
  • market and raw materials pricing;
  • commercial information and market research; and
  • information and assistance on EU competitions and funds.

ASSOCOMPOSITI currently has 50 industrial members.

Assocompositi issues technical publications on composites applications and publishes the quarterly magazine Compositi. 
 


Breton SpA
Stand number B18, Hall 12
Website: www.breton.it

Breton manufactures high speed machining centres for the aerospace and composites industries. At COMPOSITES EUROPE the company will be highlighting its RAPTOR 1200/2T machine, which is said to be ideal for high-speed milling of complex 3D workpieces made of composite materials used in the aerospace industry.

The machine has a gantry structure with moving cross beam and five interpolated axes. Thanks to the linear axis speed reaching up to 80 m/min and the rotary tilting head with rotation of C axis of ± 200° and of axis ‘A’ from 0° to +115°, RAPTOR 1200/2T offers excellent continuous 5-axis machining capacity for complex profiling, even undercuts, with maximum precision and dynamics. The direct drive twist head can be positioned at any angle within the working range and can mount spindles with 20 kW power and 28.000 rpm. The closed structure and drive assemblies mounted on the top part of the machine ensure maximum operator safety and maximum machining precision and reliability.
 


Collano Adhesives
Stand A23, Hall 12
Website: www.collano.com

Whether for automotive interiors or the construction of special vehicles, ships and containers, Collano adhesives are particularly successful when specifications go beyond simple bonding functions. Collano adhesives take on special missions such as noise dampening, absorbing vibration and shocks, equalising joint tolerances and stresses, and stabilising structures, to name just a few. Collano offers a broad range of hot melt adhesive films as well as reactive 1C and 2C adhesive systems.

Collano offers a new spray applicator for 2C PUR and 2C PUR polyurea adhesives. This offers a test platform for customer-specific as well as real-world surface bonding and contour curtaining tests. The Isotherm spray applicator is equipped with a die head and a spray/mix head. Powered by a new hydraulic drive, the high-pressure machine is exceptionally flexible as regards application quantities and mixing ratios. With a variable component mixing ratio from 1:1 to max 4:1 / 1:4, the system guarantees homogeneity and continuity in production.

Hot melt adhesive films developed by Collano are used wherever conventional adhesive systems reach their limits. They are ideally suited for applications in the transport industry (vehicles, aircraft, truck and railway platforms and superstructures, boats and ships, passenger and cabin compartments) and in house construction (interiors, acoustic panels, white boards, furniture, kitchen). Hot melt adhesive films are used in the industrial fabrication of lightweight structural components, honeycomb elements and sandwich panels, including high-performance sandwich structures consisting of foam or honeycomb cores with cover layers of metal or fibre reinforced plastic (FRP). Hot melt adhesive films are clean, can be applied with precision and quickly processed, enable a high degree of automation, and are characterised by excellent environmental compatibility. At the same time, they are sufficiently heat resistant under most circumstances. Optimised final properties can be achieved with minimal application quantities. Because preliminary coating of the substrates
(such as honeycomb and/or cover layers) is possible in many cases, the films offer great flexibility and convenience of use. Among other applications, Collano hot melt adhesive films are deployed in continuous coil coating lines to facilitate durable subsequent rear injection and lamination with various polymers.

Multilayer films are a specialty segment within the Collano hot melt adhesive films range. On the one hand, they allow incompatible substrates to be bonded. On the other hand, they impart additional functionality to composite or sandwich elements: barrier layers that repel undesirable substances, provide sound insulation, or stabilise process phases. Sandwich panel manufacturers often deploy multilayer films to split prelamination and completion into two separate thermal cycles. In most cases, this is not associated with increased costs and improves the reliability of the bond.
 


COMPOSITE-EXPO
Stand number G01, Hall 10-11
Website: www.mirexpo.ru

COMPOSITE-EXPO – 4th International Specialized Exhibition – will take place on 1-3 March 2011 in Moscow, Russia. It is organised by exhibition company Mir-Expo.

Exhibition topics include:

  • raw materials: resins, glass fibre etc.;
  • additives and modifiers;
  • equipment and technologies for composite part production;
  • tooling;
  • joining systems for composite products;
  • composite-based industrial products.

The 4th practical-research conference Modern State and Prospects of Development of Production and Use of Composite Materials in Russia is being run during the exhibition.
 


Epurex Films
Stand number E29, Hall 12
Website: www.epurex.de

Epurex Films manufactures thermoplastic films based on polyurethane (TPU films). Under the trade name Platilon® highly elastic TPU films and thermoplastic hot-melt adhesive films are extruded for various applications.

Platilon U films, for example, are used for sewage pipe re-lining, surface protection, and for release films. They have high elasticity and abrasion resistance, are free of plasticiser, UV stablilised and show excellent adhesion to epoxy, glass- and carbon fibres. Multilayer films can serve as barrier against styrene, moisture, light, chemicals and gas.

Platilon H films based on polyurethane, co-polyamide and co-polyester are low-melting adhesive films that allow even bonding. These adhesives in the form of a film can join various components, like textile fabrics or honeycomb structures, and keep exactly the same thickness of adhesive layer over entire roll length. Due to their thermoplastic character adhesion only happens by heating the material – i. e. there is no crosslinking or pot life limitation. Composite materials featureing Platilon H can be separated completely for economic recycling.
 


ERBO GmbH
Stand number D37, Hall 12
Website: www.erbo-gmbh.de

ERBO GmbH is presenting a new suction procedure for five-axis milling machines. ERBO has developed a procedure involving a combination of high pressure suction and custom-made evacuation nozzles for each individual tool, allowing suction directly at the tool tip. Dust and chips are captured directly via a movable joint device that can move along every axis, and are then fed to the high-performance extraction system. Dust and chips require much cleaning of components, particularly when constructing large moulds (for instance, for wind turbine rotors). The surroundings of the machine and the staff are exposed to dust, as are the bearings and guides. Through direct tool tip extraction, the new suction device from Erbo ensures a virtually dust-free environment. Dust and chips can be transported up to 250 m by the high-performance extraction system, to be collected in big bags, dust sacks, containers or presses, and either discarded or recycled.
 


Expert Systemtechnik GmbH
Stand number B29, Hall 12
Website: www.expertsystemtechnik.de

Expert Systemtechnik is launching a new CNC cutter. The cutEXPERT ecocam is a single-ply cutter with a very compact cutter head. The cutter is equipped with an interchangeable cutting tool in order to use either an oscillation knife, a drag knife, a driven wheel knife, a milling or a punching tool. The Expert-CAM software controls the cutter. The cutEXPERT ecocam works with a powerful vacuum system without plastic to fix the material. An NC controlled spreading device with an automatic tension control, an edge guide control and a ply counter can also be attached.

Expert Systemtechnik GmbH in Bielefeld is a provider of CAM cutting systems powered by precision waterjet technology (without abrasives) or CNC cutter, supported by in-house developed software tools. The modular design concept allows individual configuration to customised requirements, and offers engineered solutions into various industries, such as automotive and aircraft, furniture, footwear and technical textiles.


Fiberforce
Stand number E56, Hall 12
Website: www.fiberforge.com

US company Fiberforge specialises n thermoplastic composite processing technology. Its flagship product, the RELAY® manufacturing system, enables the affordable production of lightweight advanced composite structures in high volumes. Fiberforge offers technology licensing, application development, and ramp-up production.

Earlier this year, Fiberforge delivered 20 thermoplastic composite aircraft engine brackets for testing and evaluation by Honeywell Aerospace. These high performance brackets are 20% lighter than the existing titanium parts while maintaining part stiffness and all existing interfaces. In production, the parts are projected to reduce system cost through weight savings, cost effective manufacturing using Fiberforge’s RELAY process and a design that establishes a common form factor for use in multiple engine configurations.

The engine brackets are structural components that support several engine components, including hoses, cables, and printed circuit boards via integrated captive hardware. Traditionally fabricated from titanium, these replacement brackets are now comprised of carbon fibre reinforced PEEK thermoplastic tape supplied by TenCate. In order to be included in first quarter 2010 turbofan engine testing and evaluation, these brackets were designed, fabricated and delivered just 23 days after the receipt of order.

“This is an exciting programme for Fiberforge,” reports David Cramer, Fiberforge’s Chief Technology Officer. “Working closely with Honeywell and our suppliers, we are able to demonstrate Fiberforge’s ability to develop, rapidly prototype and manufacture high-performance, high-quality advanced-composite products. This is  landmark application for both Fiberforge and for the thermoplastic advanced composites industry in general. It also demonstrates that these materials offer strong potential for lightweighting in aircraft by replacing steel, aluminium and titanium. Our mission is to help customers capture this lightweighting potential to create a competitive advantage in their products.”
 


Flugzeug-Union Süd GmbH (FUS)
Stand number B15, Hall 12
Website: www.fus-online.de

Flugzeug-Union Süd GmbH (FUS) is now the official distributor for PT Technologies Europe. PT Technologies offers a wide range of products to the aerospace and defence industry for the environmentally responsible surface cleaning of parts and tools. PT's products have been tested and approved by Airbus, British Airways, Boeing and Bombardier.

FUS has been the long-term distributor in Germany and other German-speaking countries for companies like Richmond/Aerovac, Henkel (Frekote), Schnee-Morehead and Precision Fabrics Group, supplying the entire range of vacuum process materials for the manufacturing of glass- and carbon-fibre components. Flugzeug-Union Süd GmbH (FUS) was founded in 1969 as a logistics and trading company of the former MBB (Messerschmitt-Bölkow-Blohm GmbH). FUS is a 100% subsidiary of EADS Deutschland GmbH.
 


Formax
Stand number B37 Hall 12
Website: www.formax.co.uk

Formax is launching a new range of stitched core fabrics at COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010. MultiCore is a multi-purpose core fabric for the marine, automotive, industrial and construction markets.

MultiCore is a range of stitched core fabrics combining layers of reinforcement with infusable core materials, reported to offer users the following advantages:

  • optimised resin flow to allow controlled usage;
  • high drapeability allowing for complex mould forms;
  • uniform and consistent behaviour in the vacuum process; and
  • high quality surface finishes.
     

MultiCore can be adapted to maximise performance for any application with a wide choice of core materials, densities, and thicknesses. The reinforcements offered on either side of the core can also be varied, from standard chopped mats, to continuous filament mats. Formax’s range of multiaxial fabrics can also be integrated into the design to create a construction that offers precise directional reinforcement and optimum strength.

Formax will also be highlighting its portfolio of advanced reinforcement materials, including lightweight carbon fabrics for automotive and industrial applications, specialised glass fabrics for the marine and industrial sectors, and heavyweight glass fabrics for infusion processes.
 


Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology ICT
Stand number C33, Hall 12
Website: www.ict.fraunhofer.de

At COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010, the Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology ICT will display a trunk liner for the Porsche Carrera 4 made using a thermoplastic resin transfer moulding technique. The thermoplastic part weighs up to 50% less than the original aluminium part. 

ICT engineers claim that the process is suitable for mass production of up to 100 000 parts a year.

"Our method offers comparatively short production times," states Dieter Gittel, a project manager at ICT. "The cycle time to produce thermoplastic components is only around 5 minutes. Comparable thermoset components frequently require more than 20 minutes."

The Fraunhofer researchers have named the technique thermoplastic resin transfer moulding (RTM) (T-RTM). It is derived from the conventional RTM technique for thermoset composites. The composite component is formed in a single step.

"We insert the pre-heated textile structure into a temperature-controlled moulding tool so that the fibre structures are placed in alignment with the anticipated stress," Gittel explains. "That enables us to produce very lightweight components."

Carbon or glass fibres are generally used.

The next step involves injecting the activated monomer melt into the moulding chamber. This contains a catalyst and activator system. The researchers can select the system and the processing temperature in a way that enables them to set the minimum required processing time.

Another advantage of the T-RTM process is that the cost of the thermoplastic matrix material and the cost of its processing are up to 50% lower than the equivalent costs for thermoset structures.
 


GUNNAR International
Stand number C70 Hall 5
Website: www.gunnarint.com

GUNNAR International, Weissenberger AG, a Swiss based company, develops, produces and globally sells computer controlled cutting machines. At COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010, GUNNAR is announcing the European launch of its new Technical Textile CUTTER TTC119. This high speed, single layer cutter is built to work in all production environments, cutting flat materials such as composites (prepregs, dry carbon, glass fibres, aramid fibres etc.), technical textiles (canvas, vinyl, sail cloths etc.), and sheet materials (foam and card boards etc.).

The GUNNAR Technical Textile Cutter TTC119 is highly versatile and can be used within the automotive, aeronautic, marine, transportation, construction, wind energy and technical textiles industry.

GUNNAR International offers a global sales and technical service structure with offices in North America, Europe and Asia.
 


Güth & Wolf GmbH
Stand A35, Hall 10 -11
Website: www.gueth-wolf.de

Güth & Wolf GmbH produces tapes and webbings with widths of 3-300 mm and a breaking strength up to 60 tons. The company serves many different industrial sectors, e.g. the automotive industry, industrial safety, load securing, vulcanisation, sports, home textiles and composites. Its product range includes a variety of products, ranging from an 'a' like airbag tape and ending with a 'z' like zigzag braid. The company can respond quickly to specific customer requirements and also to the latest developments in technology.
 


HELD TECHNOLOGIE GmbH
Stand number A32, Hall 12
Website: www.held-tech.de

Can fibre reinforced plastics be produced on an isobaric double belt press? Yes, they can, says HELD TECHNOLOGIE. The company offers pilot lines at its Technology Park for trials of the technology. 

HELD Technologie GmbH designs and manufactures presses, specialising in isobaric double belt presses.
 


Johns Manville
Stand number CO5, Hall 10-11
Website: www.jmfibers.com

Johns Manville (JM) is launching UniTex® Rovings 086 and 076 with improved linear density (tex) consistency, enabling weavers and wind blade manufacturers to further optimise process control during the infusion process and modern automation techniques used in composites. Roving 086 has been approved by Germanischer Lloyd for use in wind turbines; it is also suitable for marine applications.

“Wind blades are so much more than glass fibres and resin," notes Philippe Bekaert at Johns Manville Fibers Europe. "Crucial to their design, manufacturing process and performance are engineering innovation. UniTex delivers better weight consistent fabrics enabling wind blade manufacturers to reduce glass and resin consumption for lighter blades at a lower total system cost. Commitment to value, continuous investment in automation and higher consistency standards are key challenges for the future success of the industry.”.
 


KRAIBURG
Stand D13, Hall 10-11
Website: www.kraiburg-rubber-compounds.com

Plate consisting of 6 CFRP layers vs. plate of 6 CFRP layers + 1 rubber layer + 1 CFRP layer.
  Crack depth without rubber Crack depth with rubber
Pointed impact:    
1 (1.5J) 0.8 0.3
2 (2 J) 1.3 0.8
3 (3 J) through 1.5
Ball impact:    
4 (1.5 J) 0.5 0.3
5 (2 J) 0.8 0.5
6 (3 J) through 0.9

Fibre composite components are normally made from the basic materials of fibre and resin. KRAIBURG has now developed a product that allows for the integration of a third, elastic material into fibre composite components, without the need for an additional process. Latest tests show that the integration of elastomers in the hard-soft-hard composite improves the damping properties.

Vibration tests were carried out in cooperation with KVB Chemnitz. Carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) plate 2 featured an integrated elastomer layer of 0.5 mm thickness at the centre of the composite structure. This layer reduces the vibration period by approximately 60%. Such products can for example be used to optimise the vibration behaviour of fast moving robot systems in order to increase the productivity of the machine.

The new product was further studied in ultrasound examinations carried out in cooperation with GMA Augsburg. These tests showed that a 2 mm thick CFRP plate with a 0.5 mm elastomer layer integrated below the top CFRP layer significantly improves the impact tolerance of the plate.

This year Kraiburg will be sharing its Composites Europe stand with Lange und Ritter GmbH.
 


KraussMaffei
Stand number C27, Hall 12
Website: www.kraussmaffei.com

KraussMaffei’s Reaction Process Machinery division and Dieffenbacher (DSE) recently agreed to cooperate on sales of systems for high-pressure resin injection (high pressure RTM). The alliance  addresses a rapidly expanding market – the use of carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) parts in the automotive industry.

The two major advantages for customers are the ability of the two alliance partners to supply turnkey solutions worldwide, and the time and effort saved by dealing with a single partner for all the elements of the system.

KraussMaffei notes that high pressure RTM is set to play a key role in producing CFRP parts for the automotive industry and current market demand for components for electric and hybrid cars confirms this trend. This process employs fibre intermediates (woven and nonwoven fabric), which are challenging to handle, and production requires vertical presses where the lower mould element allows gravity-assisted loading and draping of the fabric in the mould. The mould is then filled with epoxy resin or polyurethane using high-precision mixing heads which are docked directly onto the mould. During curing, cavity pressure can be as high as 100 bar.

The two companies will be providing the following expertise to the collaboration:

  • Dieffenbacher: hydraulic vertical presses with precise parallel control of the ram;
  • KraussMaffei: resin metering systems and mixing heads for epoxy and polyurethane;
  • Dieffenbacher: handling systems, cutting, preforming and pressing;
  • KraussMaffei: post-mould processing, milling, routing, cutting and tooling.

KraussMaffei and Dieffenbacher will also be working together to develop the process further, for example, shortening the reaction (curing) time. This is important because process time is a critical factor in productivity and return on investment.
 


KRETZER SCHEREN GMBH
Stand number G58, Hall 10-11
Website: www.kretzer.de

As the use of technical textiles such as Kevlar is increasing. However, these technical fibres are so resilient they make cutting difficult and cause the cutting edge to dull very quickly. The classic way to cut textile fabrics is by using scissors, but standard scissors do not cut glass fibres or other aramids. For this reason, Kretzer designed the TEC X1 and TEC X2 series scissors. TEC X1 is made for fibreglass and light aramids; TEC X2 for heavy aramids. Their stable, durable plastic handles are equipped with a smooth soft-rubber grip, and do not blister the fingers. Models with large loops make it possible to work while wearing gloves.

TEC X contains 8 models per series. The size range runs from 6” to 12”. Kretzer has also expanded the range with a curved blade, all-steel model – the Finny TEC X.
 


LACH DIAMANT
Stand number B23, Hall 12
Website: www.lach-diamant.de

LACH DIAMANT specialises in the manufacturing of polycrystalline diamond (PCD) cutting tools.

At COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010, LACH DIAMANT will present four PCD twist drill types from 1.0 to 100 mm diameter for precise drilling, plus its full programme of PCD tools especially developed for machining composite materials.
 


Lectra
Stand number D33, Hall 12
Website: www.lectra.com

At COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010, Lectra is presenting its Vector TechTex FX 100 cutting solution for industrial fabrics and composite materials. This new machine enables companies to cut wide pieces and meets the needs of companies looking to diversify their offering by covering a broader spectrum of applications.

"The ability to process a wide variety of industrial fabrics with a single, unique cutting solution is now essential to the survival of many companies," says Alexander Neuss, Managing Director for Lectra Germany, Eastern Europe and CIS Countries. "By extending the range of possible activities open to them with the VectorTechTex FX 100, these companies will be able to target new markets and, consequently, limit the risks tied to a decrease in volumes."

VectorTechTex FX 100 is particularly well-suited to short runs and tight production deadlines. By allowing for wider cuts (up to 2.54 m), and can process a wider variety of pieces, all of varying sizes and shapes, while limiting fabric scraps. Material consumption is thus optimised.

This cutting machine broadens Lectra’s VectorTechTex FX range by extending the variety of materials that can be handled, from carbon prepreg to multi-layer cutting of dry materials such as fibreglass and honeycomb.

The VectorTechTex FX 100 integrates a new feature to vacuum away dust produced during cutting, greatly reducing the dispersal of particles that may affect the health of operators.

The VectorTechTex FX range is also said to enable companies to reduce their energy consumption by 20-30% in comparison with standard cutters on the market. Lectra’s Energy Saver system helps to minimise energy usage by changing the machine’s vacuum power during cutting as needed and according to the fabric processed.

Lectra offers its Vector® cutting solutions with a full range of services to optimise customers’ operations. Lectra’s preventive maintenance plans and service contracts provide continuous, remote assistance. These include monitoring the production tool in real time, looking at such elements as state of operation, and wear on parts and consumables. 
 


Lightweight Structures BV
Stand number E02, Hall 10-11
Website: www.lightweight-structures.com

Lightweight Structures BV, based in Delft, the Netherlands, focuses on product development, engineering and manufacturing of structures for markets where weight reduction is one of the design drivers. One recent project involved the engineering and manufacturing of the first composite bridge deck in the city of Utrecht, the Netherlands, which was installed in April.

The bridge replaces a wooden bridge used for pedestrian and emergency vehicles. It is 12 m long and 5 m wide with a total weight of 7 tonnes and a maximal load of 45 tonnes. The hand rails can bear a horizontal load of 3 kN/m of rail. Lightweight Structures chose balsa core material, glass multiaxials and a polyester resin to manufacture the deck. All parts were vacuum infused by the company and then shipped to the contractor's yard where the bridge was assembled and the wear layers and hand rails were mounted, before final installation in Utrecht. The installation of the bridge took only a few hours.

The project is meant to be the pioneer for further bridge substitution projects in the Netherlands where a number of wooden bridges from the ‘70s will have to be replaced within the next few years. Further potential for these composite bridge decks is seen in Belgium and Germany as well as the USA and Japan.

This is the latest of several composites bridges designed and built by Lightweight Structures BV under its ECOSAFE brand name.
 


Moritz Diamantwerkzeugherstellung OHG
Stand number E36, Hall 10
Website: www.moritz-diamant.de

Moritz will be presenting its range of diamond tools for the carbon- and glass-fibre industry. The company supplies standard products as well tailor-made tools within a short period of time as a result of its in-house CNC capacities.
 


Münch Chemie International GmbH
Stand number E03, Hall 10-11
Website: www.muench-chemie.com

Muench Chemie International GmbH, Weinheim, offers semi-permanent high-performance water-based release agents for wind energy systems. The company has developed a system which is adapted to the working cycle of the wind turbine rotor blade manufacturers – less time is needed for the application, combined with easy handling and reliability. The new products of the Mikon® series are semi-permanent, water-based release agents which permit multiple releases without transfer of the release agent, ensuring an immediate further processing of the manufactured parts.
 


neoplas GmbH
Stand number D45, Hall 10-11
Website: www.neoplas.eu

Sensitive plastic surfaces can be permanently printed, varnished, adhered or decontaminated with low-temperature plasmas, without changing the characteristics of the material. At this year’s COMPOSITES EUROPE, neoplas will present its products and processes in the field of low-temperature plasmas. These are used under normal pressure conditions for surface treatment. One of the devices on show is the kinpen 09. This offers an optimal treatment for small scale and difficult to reach areas, especially for temperature-sensitive plastic surfaces which can be treated very gently without modification of the material structure. There is no need for an aggressive wet chemical or an elaborate low-pressure process.

neoplas GmbH is the technology transfer centre of the Leibniz Institute for Plasma Science and Technology eV (INP Greifswald). neoplas offers development work and services to design marketable plasma processes and prototypes.
 


nidaplast composites
Stand number D43, Hall 10-11
Website: www.nidaplast.com

Nidaplast specialises in polypropylene honeycomb core for use in sandwich panels with materials traditionally used in building and construction, like natural stone and concrete. The procedure uses a very thin layer of the raw material. This combination saves on the raw material and creates a lightweight structure.

The use of the nidaplast core in sandwich panels with natural stone can be  used in framework and self-supporting structures such as flooring, double flooring and staircases. A 5 mm thick marble skin glued on to a 28 mm thick nidaplast core can bear up to 50 times more load and strain than a 20 mm thick marble panel. The sandwich panels can also be applied vertically for partitions and frontages, and used to create furniture (tables, chairs, etc.).

Nidaplast's range of structural honeycomb cores includes: 

  • Nidaplast® 8: consisting of honeycomb core, a plastic film and a nonwoven polyester skin;
  • Nidapan®: a glass reinforced thermoplastic grid strengthens the structural honeycomb core and is used to lighten and strengthen natural stone;
  • NidaFGlass: a fine layer of glass fibre and resin combined with the honeycomb core makes the sandwich structure with natural stone resistant in a damp and corrosive environment;
  • NidaGSteel: with a fine galvanised steel skin, this product strengthens natural stone for improved fire resistance.

Nordmann, Rassmann GmbH
Stand number b25, Hall 10-11
Website: www.nrc.de

Nordmann, Rassmann is distributor of raw materials and additives. At COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010, the company will be highlighting  Ashland’s ENVIREZ® resin, which it sells in Germany.

Ashland’s ENVIREZ resin can now be used for pultrusion applications. ENVIREZ 50380 resin has high reactivity that supports fast line speeds. According to Ashland, using ENVIREZ, companies which pultrude window lineals and other building components have an opportunity to supply builders with products that earn credit toward points under the US Building Code Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED). ENVIREZ 50380 resin contains recycled materials and contributes to LEED points under Materials and Resource Credits 4.1 and 4.2.

Ashland first introduced ENVIREZ resin in 2002 for use in sheet moulding compound and has since expanded the range of applications for the product to include hand lay up, infusion moulding and solid surface products.
 


Scott & Fyfe
Stand number A17, Hall 10-11
Website: www.scott-fyfe.com

At COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010, Scott & Fyfe will launch a new product in the Polymat range. Polymat "Free-Flow" is a mechanically stitch bonded reinforcement fabric consisting of a needle bonded core sandwiched between chopped glass fibres and it expands Scott & Fyfe's product range for the closed mould market.

Polymat "Free-Flow" is said to offer a number of benefits, including high conformability to complex shapes, along with ease of handling and cutting. It has good elongation in all directions and provides an excellent surface finish.

In addition to Polymat "Free-Flow", Scott & Fyfe Ltd will display its current product ranges, including Polymat "Hi-Flow", T-RIM, woven rovings, stitch woven combination fabrics and unidirectional woven combination fabrics.

Scott & Fyfe is an independent, privately owned industrial textile manufacturer. The company operates from four manufacturing sites based in Scotland, Mexico and China.
 


Scott Bader
Stand number D03, Hall 10-11
Website: www.scottbader.com

Scott Bader will be exhibiting at COMPOSITES EUROPE for the first time. Alongside its range of Crystic® unsaturated polyester and vinyl ester resins, skin coats, gel-coats and tooling products, the company will be showcasing three new products:

  • Crestabond, a structural adhesives range based on methacrylate chemistry;
  • Crestapol® 1214, a ‘low shrink’ high performance pultrusion resin; and
  • Crystic® Fireguard 75PA Excel, an intumescent fire resistant topcoat.

The Crestabond range of methacrylate structural adhesives are primerless, requiring none or only minimal surface cleaning of the substrates to be bonded, saving both production time and assembly costs. The products are aimed at companies in the bus, truck and rail, construction, marine and wind energy markets which are looking for durable, high performance structural adhesives that can be successfully bonded to a wide variety of composite, metal and plastic substrates.

Crestapol 1214 urethane acrylate resin has been developed for pultruding profiles where there is a requirement for fire resistance, low shrink, high quality surface finish or the need to manufacture larger profiles. Crestapol 1212 and 1214 pultrusion resins can be alumina trihydrate (ATH) filled up to 200 phr to achieve a range of fire, smoke and toxic fumes standards specified for certain building and mass transportation applications. As a result of the low viscosity and high reactivity of Crestapol resins, there is no loss of line speed even when heavily filled.

The Crystic Fireguard 75PA Excel intumescent fire protection topcoat is a product upgrade. The ‘Excel’ version offers better fire retardant properties and handling, yet is still cured with a standard MEKP catalyst. It can withstand a direct flame at a temperature of 700° for over 60 minutes without the laminate behind catching fire.

On the Scott Bader stand visitors will be able to see a composite powerboat bow section and watch four new videos. The Crystic Fireguard 75PA Excel video shows the fire resistance performance of this upgraded intumescent topcoat. There are also three demonstration videos – one showing the correct techniques for the application of the new Crestabond structural adhesives, and two videos of Scott Bader’s recommended ‘best practices’ to achieve a top quality brushed or sprayed gel-coat surface finish.

Representatives from both Scott Bader and Bodo Möller Chemie GmbH, a newly appointed distributor for Germany and Austria, will be available throughout the show to answers questions.
 


Sika Tooling & Composites
Stand number F17, Hall 10-11
Website: www.sika-tooling.de

The newest developments from Sika are the three epoxy matrix systems Biresin® CR122, Biresin® CR83 and Biresin® 84.

Biresin CR122 is a non-toxic epoxy system which is mainly used for wet lay-up. It has been approved according to the German Air Ministry, LBA/RHV, guidelines for use in light aircraft, powered gliders and gliders. With its very good mechanical properties it fullfills the demands of the required LBA tests. For example, with correct post-cure a glass transition temperature of over 115°C can be reached. This compares favourably with the 97°C minimum required by LBA/RHV. The system is also approved by Germanischer Lloyd.

The new epoxy system for the vacuum infusion process, Biresin CR83, has been approved by Germanischer Lloyd for use in wind turbines and is also suitable for marine and industrial applications. It has an extremely low viscosity (155-170 mPa.s) and good wetting properties which allow fast infusion with high quality impregnation. Biresin CR83 also has a very low tendency to crystallise, which makes it very suitable for applications where storage in controlled temperature conditions is difficult.

The Biresin CR84 epoxy system is aimed at filament winding. The resin is particularly suited to the filament winding process because of its viscosity characteristics, good wetting and a very long pot life (approximately 10 hours), combined with a low cure temperature (e.g. 70°C for a Tg >80°C). Biresin CR84 system has good wetting properties and is also modified to reduce dripping from the fibres during winding. This ensures both high quality components and a clean working environment. The cured resin is tough and has good elongation to break.
 


Teufelberger GmbH
Stand number C13, Hall 12
Website: www.teufelberger.com

As well as its braiding technology, Teufelberger will be showcasing its metal-composite connection technology T-IGEL®.

The composite division of the Teufelberger Group specialises in the manufacturing of composite parts and components utilising braiding technology. Composite braiding allows for automated fabrication of complex part geometries at high throughput. The capability to integrate various load transmission elements in the braiding structure led to the development of the hybrid connection T-IGEL. This enables a connection between metal and composite using pins that are tightly bonded to the metal body and extend into the composite. No fibre damage or fibre removal occurs. A simple quality control of the joint is possible.

Over multiple pins in various arrangements, high tensional and torsional forces are conveyed. The application of the pins on stainless steel and aluminium carriers and couplings is fully automated. The interconnection strength is above the level of a structural adhesive joint and the connection is formed faster and at lower cost.

T-IGEL is especially suited for application in highly strained shafts, crash structures, and various structural components. It can also be utilised as a hybrid connection in filament wound structures.
 


Toho Tenax Europe GmbH
Stand number B14, Hall 12
Website: www.tohotenax-eu.com

Toho Tenax Europe GmbH will be exhibiting at COMPOSITES EUROPE for the first time. The company will display the complete range of Tenax® carbon fibre products: filament yarn, short fibres, and the recently developed semi-finished products Tenax® ThermoPlastics and Tenax® Net Shape Preforms.

Tenax TPCL (ThermoPlastic Consolidated Laminate) are carbon fibre reinforced thermoplastic sheets comprising several layers of woven thermoplastic prepreg. The unidirectional thermoplastic prepreg Tenax TPUD (ThermoPlastic UniDirectional) is reinforced with a specialised carbon fibre with tailored sizing for thermoplastic applications. The tape is available in a wide range of widths (6-300 mm).

Toho Tenax has also developed a new technology to manufacture preforms in an automated process using a specialised carbon fibre filament yarn, without any intermediate steps. The carbon fibres can be automatically laid in any orientation to produce complex preforms or locally reinforce parts. These Tenax Net Shape Preforms offer lower production costs as well as lower material scrap. The mechanical performance of components manufactured with the preforms is reported to be better than preforms made from standard textiles.

Toho Tenax is the core company of the Teijin Group's carbon fibres business. Toho Tenax is a leading carbon fibre manufacturer worldwide with an annual production capacity of 13 900 tons in Japan, Germany and the USA. Toho Tenax Europe GmbH, an affiliate with production facilities for Tenax carbon fibres, is located in Germany and responsible for the European market.
 


Trans-Textil GmbH
Stand number A05, Hall 12
Website: www.vap-info.com

The EADS patented vacuum assisted process (VAP®) uses semi-permeable membrane systems to exert vacuum over the entire area of a resin-infused mould to remove trapped air and volatiles. VAP membrane systems are developed and produced by EADS partner Trans-Textil GmbH, and Trans-Textil is also an EADS-authorised VAP process licensor for the non-aerospace sector. User licenses for the aerospace industry are issued by EADS itself.

Trans-Textil membrane systems comprise an air-and gas-permeable resin barrier bonded (laminated) to a sophisticated textile carrier. Each membrane system in the company’s range is tailored to specific process variables.
 


VISTAGY Inc
Stand number B22, Hall 10-11
Website: www.vistagy.com

VISTAGY Inc, a provider of engineering software and services, has announced that GKN Aerospace, a Tier One supplier to the global aviation industry, has purchased SyncroFIT® software for developing airframe assemblies, as well as VISTAGY professional services. GKN Aerospace will use SyncroFIT in conjunction with FiberSIM® composites engineering software, both components of the VISTAGY AeroSuite™, to manage the product development process and deliver an optimised winglet for Bombardier’s CSeries aircraft programme. GKN Aerospace will also make use of VISTAGY professional services, including process consulting, best practices development and customised training.

GKN Aerospace has used FiberSIM for more than 8 years to design a variety of highly complex composite parts, including the winglets on the Boeing 767, the leading edge for the Airbus A380 wings, and the wing spars for the Airbus A400M. The adoption of SyncroFIT for the CSeries winglet extends the ongoing partnership between the companies.
 


Vosschemie GmbH
Stand number E07, Hall 10-11
Website: www.vosschemie.de 

Vosschemie GmbH, of Uetersen, and Spheretex GmbH, Hilden, have announced their future intensified collaboration. As of 1 July 2010 Vosschemie, along with the family Gerhards and Mr Esser, hold shares in the newly structured Spheretex. The financial details of the deal have not been disclosed.

Vosschemie considers this move as a further step to consolidate the market position in Europe.

“The products of Spheretex GmbH ideally complement our range of products," explains Ralph-Michael Bath, authorised representative of Vosschemie GmbH. "Synergies are achieved by using the same distribution channels and by the ambition to play a leading role in innovations for light construction.”

Spheretex manufactures volumised products and reinforcing fibres for production of composites in open and closed mould applications. The company has a subsidiary in the USA and representatives all over the world.

Vosschemie, with approximately 200 employees in Germany and subsidiaries in many European countries, specialises in formulations and customised solutions based on unsaturated polyester resins.
 


Weiss Chemie + Technik GmbH & Co KG
Stand number C04, Hall 10-11
Website: www.weiss-chemie.de

Weiss supplies adhesives, cleaners and other products for window and door manufacturing. Its new COSMOHYBRID adhesives combine polyurethane and silane chemistry. These contain no hazardous substances, making them interesting for commercial use as well as for do-it-yourself market.

COSMOHYBRID adhesives offer very good UV-resistance and weathering stability, permit their use outdoors. They can be processed at low temperatures (from 0°C upwards). The adhesives allow for high-strength-elastic adhesive joints for a long-term, tight bonding of materials with different linear expansion.

Weiss has also developed the COSMO®ENERGY line of thin, highly insulating panels to match the latest energy saving recommendations and regulations (e.g. EnEV German code for energy saving and efficiency).The core material PUR/AL (polyurethane with aluminium foil) is said to set a new milestone in energy efficient façade construction. COSMO®ENERGY panels are available in almost the same variety of surface materials and designs as the company's COSMO Tech composite sandwich panels.
 


 

COMPOSITES EUROPE – facts & figures

COMPOSITES EUROPE is held annually in Germany. It is organised by Reed Exhibitions Deutschland and supported by the European composites industry association EuCIA and Reinforced Plastics magazine. The German federation of reinforced plastics AVK holds its annual conference alongside the exhibition.

COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010 is co-located with the ALUMINIUM 2010 8th World Trade Fair and Conference.

 

  


If your company is an exhibitor at COMPOSITES EUROPE 2010 and you would like to be included in this feature, please e-mail your information to RP@elsevier.com

 

 

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