CRTC and IACMI to Develop Advanced Manufacturing Machinery

08 August 2017

Through a contract with the Institute for Advanced Composite Manufacturing Innovation (IACMI), the Composite Recycling Technology Centre (CRTC), Port Angeles, Washington, US, will pioneer ways to automate processing of carbon fibre prepreg scrap.

This technology is essential so recycled carbon fibre can be processed in high volumes fulfiling its enormous potential for energy savings and carbon reduction and creating a global composites recycling industry, CRTC says.

The one-year contract with IACMI, Knoxville, Tennessee, will provide over $400,000 for the CRTC’s work to design and build processing equipment designed specifically to prepare uncured aerospace carbon fibre scrap for high volume manufacturing applications. The CRTC plans to begin making products using this process by the end of 2017 and quadruple the throughput of scrap material by the middle of 2018. The manufacturing machinery developed under this contract will be instrumental in growing the number and volume of products made at the CRTC. The technology developed will also be made available to other facilities seeking to recycle composites in high volume.

This contract further cements the CRTC/IACMI partnership announced one year ago.

The contract also includes planning support from the CRTC for IACMI’s recycled composites programme. The CRTC will be working closely with IACMI’s Materials and Processing researchers from Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, throughout the contract. The technical targets of this project will provide the building blocks for future programmes in higher-throughput advanced recycled carbon fibre equipment development, leading to the use of repurposed carbon composite scrap in vehicles and clean energy production applications within five years.

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