ELG Carbon Fibre, a producer of recycled carbon fiber materials, has started production of a range of nonwoven mats on a new production line which is designed to process recycled carbon fibers. The mats are available in widths up to 2.7 m with a range of fiber areal weights.
According the company, the materials will be suitable for OEMs in the transportation sector seeking cost effective alternatives to virgin carbon fiber for vehicle lightweighting.
The new machine has been custom built to ELG Carbon Fibre’s exacting specifications and can produce a variety of nonwoven materials including 100% recycled carbon fiber mats and thermoplastic blends such as carbon fiber mixed with PP, PA, PPS fibres.
Reconfiguration of the standard nonwoven manufacturing process was required to ensure the equipment could accept and process recycled carbon fibers. Special adaptations were made to limit fiber loss, breakage and cleaning cycles.
The machine can also use reclaimed carbon fibers that have been obtained through pyrolysis of scrap prepreg materials or cured laminates.
The equipment features a flexible, modular based design that allows extension of its initial capacity of 250 mt/pa to a maximum output of 1000 mt/pa within 9-12 months as customer demand increases. It can produce webs ranging from 100gsm-500 gsm at widths up to 2.7 m and, depending on the final mat thickness, roll lengths will range from 30-50 m.
‘With the correct design, nonwoven recycled carbon fiber can be used very successfully to manufacture low cost, lightweight structures using most high-volume manufacturing processes,’ said Frazer Barnes, MD of ELG Carbon Fibre. ‘It seems that new applications for these materials are being identified every week, making this an exciting and progressive time for the company and our technology.’
This story uses material from ELG, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier.