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ADEKA and GH Craft Develop Fibre-to-Composite Direct Moulding Process

28 November 2017

ADEKA and GH Craft claim they have developed the world’s first fibre-to-composite (FtoC) moulding process to laminate fibre reinforced plastics (FRP) in open moulds.

ADEKA, a Japanese manufacturer of chemical and food products, and GH Craft, Teijin Group’s composites design, development and evaluation unit, will unveil carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) samples made with the new FtoC process at the SAMPE Japan trade fair in Tokyo on 29 November-1 December.

The FtoC moulding process is designed to automate resin impregnating, curing and laminating processes while aligning highly oriented fibres. A rapid-curing epoxy resin developed by ADEKA is said to enable FRP to be cured in just tens of seconds with GH Craft’s new moulding process using infrared radiation. Large-scale equipment such as curing ovens and press moulds are not needed because the FRP can be laminated in an open mould. Also, compared to conventional composite production, the FtoC process considerably reduces fibre waste by directly moulding fibres to the composite without requiring intermediate steps. According to Teijin, by extending and highly orienting fibres, the process produces glass fibre reinforced plastics (GRP) that offers significantly improved performance, including 100% more bending strength, 40% more tensile strength and 75% more interlayer shear strength compared to GRP made by conventional resin transfer moulding (RTM).

Going forward, ADEKA will develop specialised resins for the FtoC process and GH Craft will develop applications. The companies will jointly verify the effectiveness of the process through the manufacture of products. They also aim to create a new composite market sector by working to establish the FtoC process as a de facto standard for FRP production.






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