28 February 2012
28 February 2012
ICCO Composites is participating in the DECID2 Project for the creation of smart profiles.
According to ICCO, the project involves a dozen partners, including manufacturers, laboratories and the EMC2 competitive cluster all working together to create a demonstration footbridge with a double structural health diagnostics capability using embedded optic fibres and ultrasonic sensors.
ICCO Composites say they were chosen for their expertise in the field of complex profiles. “As part of this European project, we incorporated optic fibres into our pultruded composite profiles. This innovation makes it possible to monitor the structure of materials for greater safety. We help our customers build customised profiles to meet new criteria or for specific applications. The demonstration footbridge can continuously monitor the structural integrity of the composite materials over time,” says Bertrand Vieille, Marketing Director of ICCO Composites.
ICCO explain that composites replace the steel that is used traditionally in this type of construction. Sensors embedded in the composite profiles monitor the material’s state of deformation to detect any failure before break occurs. The footbridge is 20m long and 7m wide and ICCO claim it is a world first; it should be installed at the EMC2 Technocampus in Bouguenais in 2012.
ICCO Composites say they are also taking part in another European project on smart profiles, called Hypermembrane. The project involves making customisable profiles for roof-type constructions, incorporating energy criteria, in particular. “We use new technologies to innovate: with glass and thermoplastic pultrusion, we can help our customers to create smart, ultra-strong structures. In doing so, we make use of our four core activities: pultrusion, machining, moulding and metal-working,” points out Bertrand Vieille.
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.
The £50 million McLaren Composites Technology Centre (MCTC) nearing completion near Sheffield, UK, was inaugurated on 16 January.