NetComposites

Connecting you to the composites industry

Advertisement

Composites Industry News

News for 19 June 2007


Decking Now Available for Industrial Use

19th June 2007 0 comments

McFarland Cascade is now offering Universal Marine Materials (UMM) composite decking for marine, architectural and other industrial uses. The Wood Material Engineering Laboratory (WMEL) at Washington State University in Pullman developed the product with Madison, Wis.-based Strandex Corp. for the Office for Naval Research. “We developed UMM to replace components on docks and piers where owners prefer to avoid chemical treatments to resist decay,” said Michael Wolcott, a professor of civil engineering at WSU and the research director at WMEL. It is made from a combination of finely ground sawdust, recycled plastic and special additives. Because it isn’t treated, the product is a desirable choice when planners want to avoid permitting delays. “When using UMM, builders and developers won’t have to go through a time-consuming environmental permitting process that comes into play when using treated lumber,” said Gary Maulin, sawn products manager of McFarland Cascade.

Read more


Bob Sweet receives Brandt Goldsworthy Pultruder of the Year 2007 Award

19th June 2007 0 comments

Delegates at the Global Pultrusion Conference held on June 7th and 8th at the Tremont Grand Conference Centre in Baltimore choose Mr. Robert Sweet in a secret ballot as the undisputed winner of the Brandt Goldsworthy Pultruder of the Year 2007 Award. Out of 7 candidates, Bob Sweet got almost 2/3 of the vote. The arguments for Sweet’s anonymously made nominations were very flattering for him as candidate: “Bob Sweet founded Creative Pultrusions and has led them successfully for well over 30 years. His company has developed countless profiles in a variety of industries. He has been instrumental in the growth of the overall pultrusion industry and has developed outstanding technology in pultruded structures. Bob has had the foresight to overcome many engineering problems and put pultruded sections into their rightful place as structural sections. Bob Sweet consistently supported new product applications such as bridge decks and building applications”. Bob received the prestigious Award, represented by a small artistic statue, called “Chapeau”, out of the hands of the Global Pultrusion Conference organizer, Mr. Jaap Ketel and Professor Dr. James Vaughan on behalf of the Conference Committee during an evening Dinner Cruise on the Baltimore Harbor. The other 6 nominees were Mr. Luigi Giamundo, Director ATP, Italy; Mr. David Johnson, President Ebert Composites Corporation, USA; Dr. Ayman S. Mosallam, Professor University of California at Irvine, USA; Mr. Eric Moussiaux, Manager EXEL Belgium; Mr. Peter Pfaff, Glasforms, USA (Second place); and Mr. Henrik Thorning, MD Fiberline AS Denmark (Third place). The Global Pultrusion Conference was held a first time in the USA and will be succeeded on March 26-28, 2008 by the EPTA World Pultrusion Conference at Hotel Crowne Plaza St. Peter in Rome, Italy.

Read more


Airtech Introduces Sprayable Multi-Bag Kit and Cartridge

19th June 2007 0 comments

A new sprayable bag kit has been introduced by Airtech to replace the discontinued brush bag kit as a quicker and cleaner way to create a reusable silicone vacuum bag. The sprayable multi-bag is a low viscosity paste and is designed for use with reinforcing materials to provide extra strength and durability. The ingredients will cure in thick sections and can be used on larger parts such as large boats, automobiles etc. The 750ml Cartridge is replaceable.

Read more


SAMPE 07 Success

19th June 2007 0 comments

SAMPE 07, held for the first time on the east coast, has been hailed as a success. The new location brought over 70 new exhibiting companies, with 254 total exhibiting companies and 3,850 attendees. “”The exhibit hall caught the attention of serious M&P companies. We believe our decision to host the SAMPE Symposium and Exhibition on both coasts is a win/win/win for SAMPE, its members and attendees and our exhibitors,”” SAMPE President Ray Miller commented. SAMPE inducted seven new SAMPE Fellows on the 25th anniversary of the SAMPE Fellow Program. The 2007 honorees were: Mr. Anthony Falcone (posthumous), The Boeing Company, Seattle, WA Dr. Ori Ishai, Technion Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel Dr. Isao Kimpara, Dept. of Aeronautics, College of Engineering and Director, Research Laboratory for Integrated Technological Systems, Kanazawa Institute of Technology, Tokyo, Japan Dr. Joseph H. Koo, Solid Freeform Fabrication Consortium, University of Texas, Austin, TX Mr. Adrie Kwakernaak, Hechting Instituut (Adhesion Institute), Delft Technical University, Netherlands Dr. Charles Lee, Air Force Office of Scientific research, Directorate of Chemistry and Life Sciences, Ballston, VA Mr. Jayant D. Patel, The Boeing Company, Long Beach, CA Notable keynote presentations were given Tuesday through Thursday, beginning with Douglas Comstock, Director of the NASA’s Innovative Partnerships Program Office. He outlined NASA’s goals for the next 10 years. Wednesday’s keynote presentation was given by Dr. Starnes Walker, Department of Homeland Security Director of Research, who discussed the role of materials and processes in the scope of Homeland Security and government programs available to fund research. On Thursday, Congressman Donald A. Manzullo of the 16th Congressional District of Illinois, gave an fervent talk on export control and ITAR regulations. He shared his views, the steps he has taken to address relevant concerns in those areas. He advised attendees about the best way to get the attention, cooperation and support of their local congressional representatives. Throughout the week, attendees had the opportunity to attend 280 technical presentations, 12 tutorials, a nanomaterials forum and 5 technical panels. “The response to the conference programs has been especially rewarding,” Jim Harris, Committee General Co-Chair said. “This year’s topics represent industries experiencing the most change. We are happy to offer the most up-to-date programming and especially appreciate the contributions from researchers and engineers who helped make this conference a success.” SAMPE ’08 will be sponsored by SAMPE’s Utah and Japan Chapters. The conference dates are May 18-22, 2008 and the exhibition dates are May 20-22, 2008. The program will be held at the Long Beach Convention Center. “Interestingly, exhibit sales for SAMPE 2008 in Long Beach are far ahead of schedule now. We are booking more new exhibitors and our existing exhibitors are booking larger spaces,” noted SAMPE President Ray Miller.

Read more


Honeywell Introduces Improved Line of Ballistic Materials

19th June 2007 0 comments

Honeywell has developed a new line of Spectra fibre-based materials with improved ballistic stopping capability for body and vehicle armour. The new line of materials, called Spectra Shield II, has demonstrated up to 20 percent greater ballistic performance than Honeywell’s standard Spectra Shield product line, which already uses one of the strongest man-made fibres in commercial use today. Shield technology is a patented Honeywell process designed to optimize the ballistic performance characteristics of Spectra fibre. For Spectra Shield II ballistic materials, Honeywell has adapted its patented shield technology to incorporate its new and improved fibre. Spectra S3000 fibre was developed specifically for use in armour applications to help manufacturers and the military counter new ballistic threats. “Our armour materials have been used to protect military and police personnel for nearly 20 years,” said Joe Gelo, business director for Honeywell’s Advanced Fibers and Composites business. “We continue to invest in improving our materials to meet the future performance requirements of advanced military and law enforcement agencies. Our latest offering demonstrates our commitment to continued innovation in the ballistic protection arena.” Honeywell has completed upgrades of several production lines to manufacture the fibre used for Spectra Shield II and plans to make additional investments to meet the growing need. Spectra fibre is made from ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene using a patented gel-spinning process. The various Spectra Shield products are manufactured by bonding parallel strands of fibre in place with an advanced resin system. In addition to Spectra fibre, Honeywell adapts this technology to other fibres, including aramid.

Read more


Florida State University Breaks Ground on New Composites Research Building

19th June 2007 0 comments

Florida State University administrators, joined by Tallahassee-area economic development officials, recently celebrated the groundbreaking of the new Materials Research Building in Tallahassee’s Innovation Park. “”With the additions of this new building and several faculty positions funded under FSU’s ‘Pathways of Excellence’ initiative, we will be among the nation’s best research centres in advanced composites,”” said Kirby Kemper, vice president of Research at FSU. “”This truly marks the beginning of the next generation of lightweight, high-performance composite materials.”” The $17 million building, which is scheduled to be ready by fall 2008, will be a two-story, 44,000-square-foot facility that houses 13 laboratories for the design, processing and characterization of advanced materials and systems. When completed, it will house the High-Performance Materials Institute and FSU’s Center of Excellence in Advanced Materials, which was established in November 2006 through a $4 million grant from the State University System’s Board of Governors. “”Working closely with many industrial partners, our research will benefit the aerospace, auto, defense, electronics and wind-energy industries by providing lightweight, safe, energy-efficient and cost-effective composite systems,”” said Ben Wang, director of the Center of Excellence in Advanced Materials and research director of the High-Performance Materials Institute. “”This building also will provide the resources for us to provide work-force training to attract industry and create jobs in the area.”

Read more


Umeco Expands Composites Activities with Acquisition of J D Lincoln

19th June 2007 0 comments

Umeco has once more expanded its composite materials business with the acquisition of J D Lincoln $59.5 million (£30.2 million). Additional cash consideration of up to $15.0 million is payable based on the EBITDA of Lincoln in the twelve months after completion. Lincoln, a privately owned business based at two sites in California, formulates and manufactures a range of pre-preg materials primarily used by aerospace tier 2 suppliers for the manufacture of composite interior structures of commercial aircraft. Umeco therefore sees it as complementary to their existing aerospace composites activities which are focused on the airframe. Clive Snowdon, Chief Executive of Umeco plc, said: “”This acquisition is our largest since that of the Advanced Composites Group in 2004, and represents a major investment in our composites activities. “”Lincoln is growing strongly, through its expanding range of new applications and qualifications and with the continuing growth of the civil aerospace industry. The composites world is entering a new era, with more aircraft manufacturers using the light weight, durable properties of composites for a wider range of applications. With the addition of Lincoln, Umeco Composites is even better placed to capitalise on these opportunities in the future.”” Scott Lincoln, currently Vice President Operations of Lincoln, will become President of Lincoln on completion of the acquisition and is expected to stay with the business for a minimum of four years, reporting to Andrew Moss, Chief Executive of Umeco Composites. The other two shareholders, JD Lincoln and Mike Burkitt, are expected to remain with the business in senior management roles for at least the first year following completion of the acquisition.

Read more


US Reinforced Plastics Demand to Reach 4.2 Billion Pounds in 2011

19th June 2007 0 comments

US reinforced plastics demand will reach 4.2 billion pounds in 2011, driven by broadened applications and enhanced competitiveness with steel and aluminium. Thermoset resins will remain dominant while thermoplastics will grow faster. Glass fibres will stay the dominant reinforcement material while nanomaterials will lead gains, according to a new study by Freedonia. This study analyzes the $6.7 billion US reinforced plastics industry. It presents historical (1996, 2001 and 2006) demand data and forecasts to 2011 and 2016 by reinforcement (e.g., glass, carbon), resin (e.g., polyester, epoxy, polypropylene, thermoplastic polyester, nylon, styrenics, polycarbonate) and market (e.g., motor vehicles, construction, producer durable equipment). The study also considers market environment factors, details industry structure, evaluates company market share and profiles 42 major players AOC, Ashland Chemical, Reichhold, Interplastic, Hexion Specialty Chemicals, and Cook Composites and Polymers. Glass fibres will continue to be the dominant reinforcement material in plastic, but carbon fibres are expected to increase 9% annually and nanomaterials will emerge commercially. Reinforced plastics demand is projected to increase 2.8 percent annually to 4.2 billion pounds in 2011, valued at $8.1 billion. This will create a market for 2.8 billion pounds of resin and 1.4 billion pounds of reinforcements. Material substitution will remain the driving force behind advances. Higher performance requirements, combined with resin, reinforcement and processing improvements, will broaden applications and enhance competitiveness with steel and aluminium. Glass fibres, due to their low cost and good performance, will continue to be the dominant reinforcement material in 2011, but carbon fibres are expected to increase nine percent annually to 32 million pounds and nanomaterials will emerge commercially, with demand reaching almost five million pounds. Thermoset resins, primarily unsaturated polyester, will continue to account for over 60 percent of all reinforced plastics in 2011. Demand for reinforced thermosets is projected to expand 2.7 percent yearly to 2.5 billion pounds in 2011, driven by their low cost and performance attributes such as strength and corrosion resistance. Product innovations and improved sheet moulding compounds and environmentally friendly low-styrene-content formulations will also spur growth. Niche opportunities are expected in areas such as pedestrian and vehicular bridge decking and wind turbine blades. Unsaturated polyester will remain the leading resin, accounting for 91 percent of all thermosets in 2011. Opportunities for reinforced epoxy are anticipated in military and commercial aircraft and aerospace applications. Faster growth, however, is anticipated for thermoplastics due to their better aesthetics and easier processing. Reinforced thermoplastics demand is forecast to grow 3.0 percent annually to 1.6 billion pounds in 2011 due to their competitive cost, high performance capabilities, processing advantages and better design capabilities. Polypropylene will remain the leading thermoplastic and present above average growth based on its low cost, stiffness and dimensional stability, particularly in motor vehicle uses. Reinforced polycarbonate will expand at the fastest pace due to its dimensional stability, impact strength and other properties, making it particularly amenable to motor vehicle and producer durable equipment uses. Thermoplastic polyester and nylon will also present good opportunities due to their high heat resistance, strength and durability. The study is available from NetComposites at the link below

Read more


Electro-Thermal Ice Protection System Completes Icing Tunnel Tests

19th June 2007 0 comments

The GKN/Ultra electro-thermal Wing Ice Protection System (WIPS) for the Boeing 787 Dreamliner, which will be the first all electro-thermal anti-ice / de-ice system to be qualified for use on a civil airliner, has successfully completed a 30 month program of icing tunnel tests in the Boeing Research Aircraft Icing Tunnel (BRAIT). In itself, this program of ground-based, simulated tests represents a major development in FAA certification procedure. Devised by Boeing, GKN Aerospace and Ultra, and for the first time, approved by the FAA, the emphasis has been to thoroughly and comprehensively test the WIPS system in simulated circumstances, pre-flight trails. This has reduced the need for expensive and extremely time consuming flight trials, and has provided a more extensive and thoroughly monitored test activity than is possible in the air. The BRIAT program is a recognised part of the process of certifying the WIPS to FAA Part 25 Appendix C. With BRIAT trials now complete, the WIPS enters a rigorous but reduced flight trial program to prove performance in the air and is expected to gain certification in Qtr2 2008. Overall, the Boeing 787 WIPS is scheduled to be designed, tested and qualified by the Boeing /GKN and Ultra WIPS team in 40 months from contract award in December 2004. Electro-thermal ice protection systems remove the need to bleed hot air from the engine, which is the traditional approach to protect against in-flight icing. The system works by embedding electro-thermal heater mats into the surface to be protected. These mats comprise an advanced composite material pad which contains a heater element. An electronic controller (developed by Ultra Electronics) monitors the condition of each surface individually. Compared to traditional hot gas systems, heat can be locally targeted and finely controlled to avoid icing in very specific areas making electro-thermal systems compatible with today’s advanced high performance critical wing designs. This increases the performance and endurance of the airframe and reduces fuel consumption significantly. The simplicity of the system also reduces maintenance tasks, helping to limit aircraft downtimes. The image shows surface preparation prior to application of Electro-Thermal Heating Element, taking place at the GKN Aerospace facility in Luton, England

Read more


Trexel Introduces New Long Glass Fibre Screw Design for MuCell Process

19th June 2007 0 comments

Trexel has developed a new screw design that, used in conjunction with Trexel’s MuCell microcellular foam process, is designed to minimise damage to long glass fibre-filled materials. These are typically materials with a glass fibre length of 12 mm or longer produced through a pultrusion process. The new screw design will also improve the property performance of standard chopped glass fibre filled materials. This design is now commercially available for all customers running glass filled materials. The new design has been successfully tested on Ticona’s Celstran polypropylene in industrial trials along with glass filled PA 6 and PA 66. However, Trexel officials confirm that the design can be used with any base resin. Engel and Trexel have agreed to install MuCell technology for mould trials using long glass fibre filled material, including a 120mm screw based on Trexel’s new design on an Engel DUO (2-platen) 1000 ton machine by early July, 2007. The machine will be located at Engel’s new technical centre and training facility in York, PA to provide customers easy access to Trexel’s new screw technology. The machine will also be available for general mould trials involving large parts. David Bernstein, President of Trexel said, “The MuCell process, when used with our proprietary screw design offers long glass fibre material users the potential to realize the tremendous benefits and mechanical property advantages of retained long glass fibres (see Figure 2), the potential for weight savings of anywhere from 5% – 12%, as well as with a typical 10-20% cycle time reduction. More important, you get these benefits along with very little warpage, which has always been a big problem for long glass fibre materials.” Levi Kishbaugh, VP of Engineering for Trexel noted that “comparison testing of sample plaques of polypropylene 40% long glass fibre material moulded solid and then moulded using the MuCell microcellular foam process showed anywhere from a five-fold to six-fold reduction in warpage when molded using the MuCell process.” The new screw design uses a lower compression ratio, 2.0:1 as compared to 2.5:1, and incorporates significant changes to the centre restriction element and the wiping and mixing sections to reduce shear. Testing to date on these screws has been done using the MuCell microcellular foam process with up to 0.6% nitrogen in a 40% glass fibre filled PP without observing process variations. “Engel was the first injection moulding machine builder involved in commercializing MuCell technology with Trexel,” said Jim Moran, Engel Vice President of Sales for North America. “Engel worldwide is the number one seller of injection moulding machines utilizing Trexel’s MuCell technology, and we’ve had a long and mutually productive working relationship,” he added. “Engel is a leader in providing injection moulding machines for long glass fiber automotive applications, and we’re excited about integrating this new technology from Trexel,” said Moran.

Read more


Advertisement

Upcoming Events

Advertisement

Advertisement

Advertisement

Follow us
Subscribe to our email newsletter

Subscribe to receive our weekly round-up of all the industry's latest news, jobs, events and more!

We'll always keep your personal details secure and will never share them with third parties for marketing purposes. You can unsubscribe at any time. For further details on how we may use your data, please visit our Privacy Policy.