07 May 2004
07 May 2004
Cordek are pioneering the use of disposable mould technology to create versatile, individually-shaped fibreglass designs.
Advances in polystyrene mould technology by Cordek have opened up possibilities for architects, and a whole range of new applications for the construction, marine and entertainment industries.
“This technique of using disposable expanded polystyrene moulds from which to produce Glass Reinforced Panels (GRP) is a real breakthrough for architects as it enables complex shapes and forms to be produced more quickly and economically than is possible with traditional materials, and architects can now offer their clients aesthetically pleasing and unique designs at an acceptable cost” says Rodney White, Cordek's Managing Director and co-founder.
Cordek has just manufactured 78 individual polystyrene moulds to make 39 fibreglass panels, each of them unique, to meet the brief of architects Sheppard Robson for an egg-shaped hub space running from top to bottom of Arup's London headquarters building.
The new manufacturing process required substantial investment in computer-controlled cutting equipment and a state-of-the-art five-axis routing machine, the only one of the kind to be used for shaping Expanded Polystyrene.
The panels are fitted around the perimeter of each hub space in the building and successfully conceal coffee-making and refreshments stations from the rest of the office space on each floor.
The Arup HQ contract is the first in a long line of applications on which work is now under way in the construction, marine and entertainment industries, Mr White said.
Toho Tenax is introducing a high-tensile, highly shock-resistant prepreg that incorporates carbon fibre developed for aerospace applications and carbon nanotubes (CNTs).
NTPT is collaborating with the Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne - Swiss Centre of Technology (EPFL) and other partners to research discontinuous fibre composite tubes for high performance applications.
Hexcel is promoting its range of composite materials for skis, snowboards and other high performance winter sports equipment at ISPO Munich 2018 on 28-31 January.