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Hexcel to display composite tech at Composites Europe

Sep '19
Pic: Hexcel
Pic: Hexcel
Hexcel will display its full range of composite technologies, developed to benefit design engineers in automotive, marine, sport, and wind energy sectors, at Composites Europe trade show, being organised in Stuttgart during September 10-12. Innovations on display include Hexcel’s surfacing prepregs and semi-pregs for wind turbine blades and boat building.

Providing a tough, durable and ready-to-paint surface without using in-mold coats, these fibre-reinforced matrix products shorten manufacturing cycles and reduce material costs. HexPly XF2 prepreg has a ready-to-paint surface, straight from the mold, and saves at least two hours of takt time for wind blade production. A leading boat builder has manufactured a composite panel to demonstrate the benefits of HexPly XF2 surface prepreg combined with Hexcel’s SuperFIT technology. Marine customers in the UK are provided expert support by Mouldlife, part of Hexcel’s official distributor network.

Hexcel will also display the latest golf shaft design from True Temper, made from HexTow carbon fibre. The new Project X Smoke Green shafts utilise Hexcel’s HexTow HM63 carbon fibres with the plies angled to provide added stability for the strongest swingers.

“HexTow HM63 was the perfect fibre for our new Smoke Green shaft. This shaft is designed for the strongest golfers in the world, and the high modulus of the HexTow HM63 fibre allows us to build an extremely stable yet lightweight shaft,” said Don Brown, senior director of marketing and innovation for True Temper.

HexTow HM63 PAN based continuous fibre is available in 6,000 (6K) and 12,000 (12K) filament count tows and is preferred for sporting applications requiring high strength and high modulus performance. The fibre has been surface treated and sized to improve its handling characteristics, interlaminar shear strength, compressive strength, and structural properties.

Bike wheel manufacturer Corima has used Hexcel’s composite materials for many years to manufacture competition wheels used by cycling champions. Corima’s latest 3-spoke wheel will be displayed at Composites Europe, showcasing the highly effective use of Hexcel’s carbon fibre prepreg and reinforcements. With this new aerodynamic 3-spoke wheel, race competitors are exceeding speeds of 100km per hour in time trials. The wheel is compression molded using structural foam and Hexcel’s lightweight PrimeTex 98gsm 3k fabrics and HexPly prepreg. Corima perfected the design using their in-house CAD, FEA and prototyping, plus wind-tunnel and track tests. The benefits are superior stiffness for enhanced power transfer, vibration absorption for a quiet and more comfortable ride, and reliability and lightness.

Hexcel’s HiMax DPA (Dot Pattern Adhesive) reinforcements are non-crimp fabrics supplied pre-tacked, allowing multiple fabrics to be laid-up more easily in preparation for resin infusion. Providing an optimal, consistent level of adhesion, they allow a faster and more consistent resin flow, as well as eliminating the use of spray adhesive for a healthier working environment and lower risk of contamination. HiMax DPA fabrics are widely used in boat building, where they are simply unrolled and applied to the mold or core layer before introducing resin, reducing lay-up times by up to 50 per cent.

Hexcel’s automotive promotions focus on the company’s mastery of prepreg technology, where fibre reinforcements are supplied pre-impregnated with precise amounts of epoxy resin. HexPly M901 prepreg was developed specifically for composite leaf springs, allowing weight savings of up to 70 per cent compared to traditional steel designs. Composite leaf springs resist corrosion, are easy to integrate into suspension systems, and provide very high levels of performance. Hexcel’s display at Composites Europe will include a composite leaf spring manufactured by ZF using new HexPly M901 glass fibre prepreg that cures in less than 15 minutes and provides 15 per cent higher mechanical performance than competing products with enhanced fatigue properties.

Hexcel will also display a lightweight CFRP transmission cross member produced from Hexcel’s high performance HexMC-i 2000 molding compound. Designed to connect the chassis together and support vehicle transmission, the transmission cross member was developed by Hexcel in partnership with the Institute of Polymer Product Engineering (at Linz University), Engel and Alpex. Hexcel’s HexMC-i 2000 was selected as the best-performing molding compound on the market, curing in as little as two minutes to produce strong, lightweight parts that resist fatigue and corrosion. (SV)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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