This page contains a Flash digital edition of a book.
composites and LFTs | technology

Right: Glass is introduced

direct into the melt in the plasticising unit in the joint Arburg/SKZ LFT-D process

The partners see applications in semi-structural parts and in primary body and chassis components, where the composite materials could be used on their own or in combination with short or long fibre rein- forced thermoplastics in hybrid structures produced using injection overmoulding techniques. An example of this hybrid approach can be seen in the seat pan developed for GM’s Opel Astra OPC sport coupe. Launched last year, this is the first production part to be produced using a continuous fibre reinforced Ultramid PA and it delivered a 45% weight saving over its metal prede- cessor. The pan’s hybrid structure combines an in-mould formed continuous reinforced Ultramid PA sheet that is overmoulded with a short glass reinforced Ultramid grade to integrate additional reinforcement ribbing and edge structures. Both the forming and overmoulding stages take place in the injection mould in one production step. Lanxess is also focusing attention on continuous

fibre reinforced thermoplastics composites, acquiring Brilon, Germany-based Bond Laminates last summer. Bond develops and manufactures a range of fibre reinforced thermoplastics composite sheets marketed under the Tepex name and has been working with Lanxess on automotive developments since 2006. “Our aim in acquiring Bond-Laminates is to

strengthen our position as one of the leading suppliers of lightweight construction technologies for green mobility,” says Dr Martin Wanders, head of Global Applications Development in the Lanxess High Perfor- mance Materials (HPM) business unit. Lanxess also sees hybrid components playing a key

Right: Arburg moulded this LFT light housing at

Fakuma using a new LFT-D

direct process- ing technology, which it claims cuts cost and

maintains fibre length


role in automotive applications in the future. Recent development projects completed by the company together with Bond include a brake pedal manufactured using an insert moulding process using a 2mm thick 47% glass reinforced Tepex PA6 sheet overmoulded with a 30% glass reinforced Durethan PA6 compound. Developed with Tier One supplier ZF Friedrichshafen, the part is said to provide a 50% weight saving over steel.

Other development

projects include a thermo- plastic airbag cover developed with airbag systems maker Takata-Petri. The part, which comprises a PA6 thermoplastic composite sheet overmoulded with Durethan

INJECTION WORLD | January/February 2013

PA6 on a KraussMaffei machine and Siebenwurst mould, is said to meet performance requirements while reducing weight by 30%. At last year’s Innovative Composites Summit in

Boston in the US, Ticona’s engineering polymers technology launch manager Michael Ruby presented the results of a study ( the company has carried out with Germany’s Fraunhofer ICT, Swedish fibre reinforcement specialist Oxeon and US thermoplastics composite processing technologies developer Fiberforge, which looked at methods for incorporation of uni-directional continuous fibre reinforcement tapes and fabrics into LFT-D PP components. Fraunhofer ICT’s role in the project was to compound the LFT-D, develop the lay-up configurations and mould the study samples. Its laboratory at Pfinztal in Germany is equipped with a Fibreforge large scale Relay automated lay-up station, which was used for production of the custom multiple-ply thermoplastic preforms.

Ruby said the first stage of the project involved

mechanical testing of a number of samples of LFT-D, unidirectional tape and custom multi-ply laminates, as well as hybrid constructions of LFT-D and different reinforcement preforms. The results of these tests allowed the team to develop a lay-up pattern that was then trialled in an automotive engine noise shield mould provided by German Tier One supplier Minda Schenk Plastic Solutions. The test part was moulded by Fraun- hofer ICT staff in its Dieffen- bacher in-line LFT-D compounding and compres- sion moulding press. Ruby says that the project

demonstrated that a hybrid moulding process allows a

Page 1  |  Page 2  |  Page 3  |  Page 4  |  Page 5  |  Page 6  |  Page 7  |  Page 8  |  Page 9  |  Page 10  |  Page 11  |  Page 12  |  Page 13  |  Page 14  |  Page 15  |  Page 16  |  Page 17  |  Page 18  |  Page 19  |  Page 20  |  Page 21  |  Page 22  |  Page 23  |  Page 24  |  Page 25  |  Page 26  |  Page 27  |  Page 28  |  Page 29  |  Page 30  |  Page 31  |  Page 32  |  Page 33  |  Page 34  |  Page 35  |  Page 36  |  Page 37  |  Page 38  |  Page 39  |  Page 40  |  Page 41  |  Page 42  |  Page 43  |  Page 44  |  Page 45  |  Page 46  |  Page 47  |  Page 48  |  Page 49  |  Page 50  |  Page 51  |  Page 52  |  Page 53  |  Page 54  |  Page 55  |  Page 56