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Composites Industry News

News for January 2010


ABC Search for Sustainable Composite Chemicals

19th January 2010 0 comments

The North East Process Industry Cluster (NEPIC) is taking the lead on a 30 month group project to identify commercial opportunities for alternative chemicals made from sustainable resources.

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icotec Receives CE-Approval for Composite Lumbar Spacer

20th January 2010 0 comments

Icotec has gained CE approval for its titanium coated continuous CF/PEEK Lumbar Spacer “ETurn Ti.” The ETurn Ti Lumbar Spacer is a continuous carbon fibre PEEK lumbar fusion device with a titanium coating. It is used for posterior intersomatic spondylodesis (PLIF, TLIF and EPLIF). The special titanium coating is said to promote direct bone on-growth to the implant and manufacturers believe it will improve implant incorporation. “”We are very proud to be the first company to combine the best features of two well-established materials in one spine product: The CF/PEEK has mechanical properties superior to PEEK and offers optimal imaging conditions, whereas the porous titanium coating on the implant will provide an excellent interface for direct and fast bone integration.”” says Roger Stadler, CEO of icotec. Professor Fritz Magerl, senior scientific medical advisor at icotec, who developed and pro-motes the sub-muscular EPLIF approach states: “The ETurn Lumbar Spacer has a unique guiding surface. Surgeons using this implant are very much in favour of the self-positioning features of the implant. These features improve the surgical technique and minimize risk of failures”

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High-performance Resin with Improved Friction Characteristics

21st January 2010 0 comments

Ultrason KR 4113, is the latest addition to the BASF polyethersulfone product line (PESU), and is purposely built to offer strong friction characteristics. By combining carbon fibres, graphite and PTFE (polytetrafluoroethylene), manufacturers were able to gain surprising results, confirmed by tribological investigation specialist, Nanoprofile of Kaiserslautern, Germany. Testing involved unidirectional sliding wear tests, using the ring-on-plate principle. In this test, a plastic specimen under a high load slides against a ring-shaped counterbody of hardened chrome steel at a defined speed under non-lubricated conditions. Once this has been carried out, Nanoprofile measured at the penetration of the counterbody into the test specimen. According to BASF, results showed that wear rate for classic Ultrason E 2010 is about 420 (10-6 mm³ N-1 m-1), the carbon-fibre-reinforced Ultrason E 2010 C6 has a value of only 3.0 and Ultrason KR 4113 is just 1.5. In addition to the low wear and friction characteristics that were measured, Ultrason KR 4113 is said to offer oil resistance, high dimensional stability and thermal stability up to 200 °C, which BASF say makes it ideal for applications such as oil pumps.

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METYX Composites Signs French Distribution Deal

21st January 2010 0 comments

METYX Composites is to make Scott Bader its exclusive distributor within France, increasing METYX global network of distributors to 24 countries.

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Raw Materials Increases for North America and Europe

21st January 2010 0 comments

Ashland and Reichhold disclose price changes effective as of early 2010.

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Solar Impulse HB-SIA Takes Off

22nd January 2010 0 comments

The Solar Impulse HB-SIA, which is reported to be the first airplane designed to fly day and night without fuel, has successfully left the ground for the first time after its first test flight. What makes the Solar Impulse HB-SIA different from many of the solar aircraft currently being designed for long periods of flight is that this will be a manned aeroplane. During the first test flight, pilot Markus Scherdel was able take the prototype up to its take-off speed, resulting in a sustained flight of 350 metres at an altitude of one meter. In order to overcome the problem of a carrying a heavy payload, designers had to adapt several technologies, making the plane as energy-efficient as possible. By borrowing design principles used in gliders and using the latest composite and photovoltaic materials, the Solar Impulse HB-SIA looks set to achieve its goal of a sustained solar flight. “”On the one hand I find it terrific to see a dream come true. For over ten years now, I have dreamt of a solar aircraft capable of flying day and night without fuel, and promoting renewable energy. Today, our plane took off and was airborne for the very first time,” said Bertrand Piccard, President of Solar Impulse. “This is an unbelievable and unforgettable moment. On the other hand, I remain humble in the face of the difficult journey still to be accomplished – it’s a long way between these initial tests and a circumnavigation of the world,” added Piccard. “”This is the culmination of six years of intense work by a very experienced team of professionals! This first ‘flea hop’ successfully completes the first phase of Solar Impulse, confirming our technical choices. We are now ready to start the next phase – the actual flight tests,”” said Andre Borschberg, co-founder and CEO of Solar Impulse. At this stage, the solar panels have not yet been connected. With the positive conclusion of this initial “flea hop”, the Solar Impulse HB-SIA will now be dismantled and transported to the airfield at Payerne. From early 2010, the aircraft will make its first solar test flights, gradually increasing flight duration until it makes its first night flight using solar energy.

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HYBON Certified by GL for Wind Turbine Applications

22nd January 2010 0 comments

PPG Industries’ HYBON fiber glass roving products have gained certification from Germanischer Lloyd, for use in the wind energy industry. The certification includes HYBON 2001, 2002, 2006 and high-performance 2026 fiber glass rovings. It applies to products manufactured at all five PPG fiber glass locations – three in the United States; one in Wigan, England, U.K.; and one in Zibo, Shandong Province, China, that is a joint venture of PPG and Sinoma Jinjing Fiber Glass Co. Ltd. Cheryl Richards, PPG global market manager, wind energy, HYBON fiber glass rovings offer blade producers the ability to engineer higher-performing products using a variety of resins, including vinyl ester. “The certification verifies that HYBON fiber glass products exceed the requirements put forth by GL,” says Cheryl Richards, PPG Global Market Manager. “PPG will continue to support and surpass the demanding requirements of this growing and emerging industry for customers and applications worldwide,” adds Richards.

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Terrafugia Uses Dassault Systèmes to Create Street-Legal Aeroplane

22nd January 2010 0 comments

Dassault Systèmes’ CATIA brand has been chosen by Terrafugia, creators of the revolutionary Transition Roadable Aircraft, for 3D composite and finite-element modelling.

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Forté Technology Moves Into Chinese Fibreglass Market

22nd January 2010 0 comments

Forté Technology has recently installed its 7760 model moisture measurement system in a Chinese glass fibre roving manufacturer. Despite having an established a sales and service base in Shanghai, this is the company’s first venture into the Chinese fibreglass market. Forté Technology say their technology uses a nondestructive dielectric measuring principle to measure moisture. With this technology, instantaneous moisture measurements can be made near or beside where the trolleys of roving packages are located being removed from the oven. Because of this, if a wet roving is measured, immediate action can be taken (such as checking the oven or the winder if the mill makes soft packages for microwave drying). Pat White, President of Forté Technology, Inc. states: “Our 7760 offers glass fibre mills several advantages and cost savings compared to oven testing. Losses associated with oven testing include electric consumption from the ovens, product losses associated with destroying the samples, long test cycles, and missing problems in the middle of the package. With the 7760, the complete roving sample is measured, including the inside core. The Forte system is like insurance that helps the fibreglass deliver consistent product. It helps the mill be a reliable supplier by reducing their customers chances of facing costly problems related to moisture.” The Forte Series 7000 is normally used on a “”Go/No Go”” basis. It is a lab-type unit, but manufacturers say it is rugged enough to put on the production floor. Sample rovings are taken off the trolley and put into the Forte test cell. Correlating the Forte Index Number with the wettest allowable package helps the mill identify rovings that will not meet the end users specifications.

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Plasti-Fab Decreases Solvent VOC Emissions by 96% with MEP Program

22nd January 2010 0 comments

Plasti-Fab has implemented its Managed Emissions Processes Program, minimizing their production footprint by reducing VOC emissions. The program, launched in 2009, is said to eliminate the use of Acetone as a process solvent. Reducing usage from 2000 gallons a year to less than 70 gallons per year, they were able to cut VOC emissions from Acetone by more than 96%. As a result of these efforts, Plasti-Fab will go from a Small Quantity Generator (SQG) of hazardous waste – nearly 17,000 pounds annually, to a Conditionally Exempt Generator (CEG) – less than 2640 pounds annually. In addition to its heavy concentration on improving Acetone levels, Plasti-Fab has also switched its process of dispensing resin from traditional containers to closed dispensing systems. This manages and controls the VOC of gassing emissions by more than 80% for infusion oriented processes. Plasti Fab’s commitment to reducing emissions will continue this year. As of 2010, Plasti-Fab officially began recycling and reusing fiberglass waste in the form of a recycled FRP compound. This compound is not only greener, but also much stronger and will replace several poly foam materials currently being used in various projects.

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