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CTAG Launch CarbonInspired

18 October 2011

The Automotive Technology Centre of Galicia (CTAG)has launched CarbonInspired, the online virtual platform of their European knowledge transfer network fornanomaterials.

The CarbonInspired virtual platform has been designed to serve as a contact and sharing place for all companies interested in new materials. CTAG saysthe platform establishes a bound between the market and fundamental research carried out within technological centres and universities, thus facilitating knowledge transfer from these centres to the companies. The platform provides free advice to enterprises, especially SMEs, on the development of new products and processes involving nanoparticles. Additionally, CTAG explain it will help them to maintain contact with partners, providers and customers, and to stay informed on technological novelties thanks to some tools such as the online technical observatory, the virtual community of experts, projects database, etc.

According to CTAG, the virtual platform is built within the framework of the CarbonInspired project, which started in the early 2011, with the support of the Territorial Cooperation Programme INTERREG IVB SUDOE co-funded by the ERDF fund. The purpose of this project is to establish a knowledge transfer network between Spain, Portugal and France, labelled as the SUDOE space, in order to encourage the integration of high added value materials containing carbon-based nanoparticles into the automotive and building sectors.

CTAG say that a brake pedal able to detect the force applied by the driver, a car paint that resists scratches and is able to self-repair, engine components with self-lubricant features, a cheap construction panel with fire resistance or foam materials with high thermal insulating efficiency. These are some of the applications that can be achieved through the use of high added value new materials containing carbon-based nanoparticles, in Press Note nº2 which CTAG currently works within the framework of the European project named CarbonInspired.

The development of new materials with enhanced characteristics is linked to the fact that particles of nanometric size (1 nanometer equals 0.000000001 metres) show excellent and unique properties (mechanical, electrical, magnetic, optical, etc.), which CTAG says make them suitable for several sectors.

With approximately a one million euro budget, funded in part by the European Union, the project has started by gathering the resources of a consortium of entities such as CTAG, as the network coordinator, the Technical Institute of Plastics (AIMPLAS), the Basque technical centre Tekniker-IK4, the University of Aveiro (Portugal) and the French association for the development of research between Universities, Research Centres and Companies of Aquitain (ADERA).

CTAG explain that one purpose of this project, besides boosting research in a field that presents a lot of potential applications, is to establish a knowledge transfer network between Spain, Portugal and the south of France so as to facilitate the insertion of these carbon-based nanomaterials in the automotive and construction sectors.

CarbonInspired is designed to establish a bridge between research in carbon-based nanomaterials carried out by the scientific community and its entry in the market, through the search for applications as products and process with high added value, being safe, cost-effective, and environment-friendly. The members of CarbonInspired will present their capacities in Barcelona, from November 14th – 18th at EQUIPLAST 2011. CTAG will give a talk regarding the use of carbon-based nanomaterials in the automotive sector, during the 12th International Conference on Automotive Plastics, organised in this exhibition by the Spanish Centre for Plastics.

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