Responding to the challenge set by automotive OEM’s and tier I suppliers to deliver a prepreg system that can be fully integrated into existing processes, Hexcel has developed an innovative self-adhesive ultra-rapid (<30 seconds) curing, epoxy prepreg system that can be bonded to metals without an additional film adhesive layer. This breakthrough in technology, which is fully compatible with industry-standard e-coat processing, does not require secondary tooling and processing lines since localised prepreg reinforcement patches can now be added to metal parts in a single step.
Metal composite hybrid structures are a growing trend in automotive design, helping to address future crash test requirements, particularly for battery protection in electric cars. The hybrid part on display at JEC World will deliver significant weight savings as well as increased energy absorption and impact protection for passenger safety. Hexcel’s HexPly ultra-fast cure self-adhesive prepreg cures and bonds to metals, including aluminium or oily steel, in a highly efficient one-step process.
Hexcel has recently supported NaCa Systems, a Tier I supplier of natural fibre composite automotive interior parts, to produce a sports car seat back, with hybrid wood fibre and carbon fibre construction. The part on display uses a rapid press moulding process to combine Hexcel’s HexPly M77CS prepregs with NaCa Systems’ thermoset wooden fibre mats that are derived from wood industry waste streams.
HexPly M77CS is a fast-curing epoxy prepreg that enables automotive components to be press-cured in two minutes at 150°C. The HexPly woven carbon fibre is used as the outer surface of the seat back, reinforcing the wood fibre structure and providing a stunning aesthetic finish.
Fibre2Fashion News Desk (PC)