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Boeing and Russell Brands are working together to incorporate excess carbon fibre from 787 Dreamliner production in Russell Athletic protective athletic gear.
The companies explain they will expand an initial collaboration that puts 787 carbon fibre into Russell Athletic’s new CarbonTek football shoulder pad system.
According to Boeing, the company sees more opportunities to repurpose carbon fibre as it increases the use of composites in its commercial airplanes. Composite materials make up 50% of the primary structure of the 787, including the fuselage and wing, helping to make the Dreamliner 20% more fuel efficient than the airplane it replaces. In addition, Boeing’s new 777X will be the largest and most-efficient twin-engine jet in the world due in part to the industry’s largest composite wing.
“Boeing decided to build the 787 Dreamliner with carbon composites to increase fuel efficiency for our customers and improve the passenger experience,” said Julie Felgar, Managing Director of Boeing Commercial Airplanes Environmental Strategy. “Our collaboration with Russell Athletic is a fabulous opportunity to utilise the strength and lightweight characteristics of 787 carbon fibre to support elite athletes on the field.”
Russel Athletic explains the CarbonTek with OS Technology (patent-pending) shoulder pad system has the sports industry’s first-ever exoskeleton made of aerospace-grade carbon fibre, which is thinner, stronger and approximately 10% lighter compared to competitors. The high-performance fibre also offers an increased range of motion and secure fit for the athlete’s body.
“We are thrilled to partner with Boeing and discover new ways to utilise carbon fibre used on the 787 to make innovative, game-changing products for the sports industry,” said Robby Davis, Senior Vice President and General Manager at Russell Athletic. “It’s an exciting opportunity for both companies to leverage the value of carbon fibre used in high-performance gear while helping to meet environmental goals.”
Photo provided by Boeing
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