01 October 2001
01 October 2001
Composite Products has received DaimlerChrysler’s 2000 Gold Quality Award for 100% conformance with visual, dimensional and strength specifications. CPI supplies door surrounds and other glass/ thermoplastic composite structural components for Jeep Wrangler soft-top vehicles manufactured at the DaimlerChrysler Toledo assembly plant.
The parts are made using CPI’s patented in-line compounding process for the production of long fiber thermoplastic (LFT) composites. This is the second consecutive year that CPI has received the Gold Award. Melissa Wanger, CPI’s Head Quality Engineer, reports that during the 2000 calendar year the company shipped approximately 90,000 sets (surrounds for left and right doors) without any rejects. The parts are molded from 40% long fiber glass filled polypropylene and weigh about 4.5 lb. for each surround.
“The LFT process can produce a broad range of thermoplastic compositions based on polypropylene, nylon, polyester and most other thermoplastic resins, with glass loadings ranging up to 50 percent,” said Dr. John Busch, CPI’s Director of Business Development. “The process completely encapsulates the fiber to produce a finished composite with outstanding toughness and minimal fiber damage.” LFT in-line compounding and molding technology produces molded parts in cycle times that range from 45 to 70 seconds. Existing systems are rated for throughput of up to 1100 kilograms/hr, with charge sizes ranging in weight from 1.0 to 15.0 kilograms. The process is scalable and a system could be easily designed with higher throughput to mold larger parts. “We see in-line compounding as a revolutionary step in the economics of thermoplastic composites,” said Dr. Busch.