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NTPT Develop New Quartz Fibre Prepreg Material for Watch

02 June 2015

North Thin Ply Technology (NTPT) will supply the composite materials used in the new Richard Mille RM 27-02 Rafael Nadal watch.

When the Spanish tennis player started his campaign to win a record tenth Roland Garros title, he was wearing the new watch, which has an ultralight and unbreakable case, made of Thin Ply Technology (TPT) Carbon and Quartz prepreg materials.

NTPT and Richard Mille’s engineers together developed a highly original prepreg and laminate material known as TPT Quartz, composed of hundreds of layers of quartz filaments sequenced on top of each other. Quartz fibres are exceptionally resistant to high temperatures and are characterised by extreme strength and transparency to electromagnetic waves. To match these high technical specifications, NTPT developed a unique white, UV resistant matrix resin material.

For the Richard Mille RM 27-02 Rafael Nadal watch, NTPT started with producing rolls of UD prepreg tapes of carbon and quartz. These UD tapes were then transformed into preforms with the assistance of NTPT’s Automated Tape Laydown (ATL) machine. The TPT Carbon and TPT Quartz preforms were then carefully stacked to create a black and white block and finally machined by Richard Mille to create the parts for the watch. The bezel and solid case back in TPT Carbon/TPT Quartz are attached to the unibody baseplate, a very complex part that has been machined from a separate 100% TPT Carbon block.

Working on the exciting project of the Richard Mille RM 27-02 Rafael Nadal, NTPT has developed unique know-how in processing quartz fibres and is now able to offer a wide range of prepreg materials from UD Tapes of 50gsm through to multi-axial preforms. The preforms of TPT Quartz can be applied in many other sectors, for example in aerospace, telecoms and defence applications.

NTPT and Richard Mille joined forces four years ago and the Richard Mille RM 27-02 Rafael Nadal is the latest new and unique development of the two Swiss companies.





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