26 September 2005
26 September 2005
UK's epm: technology Group has made another novel thermo-composite development in producing a one piece vehicle tub.
The component is lightweight, recyclable and is a complete vehicle structure measuring 1.8m wide & 4.2m long, also incorporating many of the vehicles interior features.
Graham Mulholland, Managing Director, states ‘This component represents an eventful eighteen-month period. We have opened a new 40,000sqft thermo-composite component manufacturing plant and re-focused a number of volume automotive component contracts in their own purposely-designed manufacturing cells, we have also opened our Asia plant which is now producing’.
He continues: ‘epm’s growth still continues to surprise some sections of the composite community; our aim has always been to achieve ‘critical mass’ quickly. Now we have achieved this, it has given us a formidable foundation’.
This latest development pulls together all the functions of the epm group. In house, the company has produced CNC patterns, tooling and component design and manufacture. All these operations have been controlled and produced at the Technical Centre, Draycott, Derby, UK.
The project is currently being transferred to its production centre in Coalville, Northwest Leicestershire, and will produce around 2000 units per year.
Mulholland finishes. ‘It’s a great achievement for the team and gives the client a real tangible technology step change.
Mulholland’s team has recently been linked to a number of high profile ventures to date, Longbridge has now been linked to the company with an opportunity to produce complete composite vehicle systems and structures.
Mulholland would not be drawn on the future strategy, stating the current Tub project is a significant step forward for thermo-composite technology and the epm: technology group.
Since its inception in 1996, EPM has quickly established itself as one of the UK’s top 5 composite suppliers and following a restructure of the business and a series of acquisitions, sales have grown from £350,000 to £5.5 million in just two years.
Now operating from four sites and employing over 140 people, EPM are responsible for supplying lightweight engineering and manufacturing solutions to many of the leading F1 and World Rally teams. EPM has grown through the strategic development of dedicated centres of excellence, responsible for all aspects of the firm’s operations.
The American Composites Manufacturers Association participated in a roundtable discussion about the IMAGINE Act. Known as the Innovative Materials in American Growth and Infrastructure, Newly Expanded (IMAGINE) Act, the new bill is designed to promote the increased use of innovative materials like fibre reinforced polymer (FRP) composites, as well as new manufacturing methods to accelerate the deployment and extend the life of infrastructure projects.
After the collapse of a drinking water pipeline in downtown Amsterdam, the Netherlands, Insituform was contracted to reline a close to 100 year old pipe underneath one of the canals. Water was restored successfully within five days, with minimal impact on traffic and the environment.
Australian organisations Austrak, Laing O’Rourke and the University of Southern Queensland (USQ) have joined forces to develop polymer composite solutions for bridge transoms in a $10 million project titled Polymer Composite Transoms for Rail Bridge Deck Replacement (CompTrans).