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Affordable organosheets for mass-customised FRP components in multiple sectors

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - OLU-PREG (Affordable organosheets for mass-customised FRP components in multiple sectors)

Reporting period: 2016-02-01 to 2016-07-31

The aim of the innovation project is to commercialise successfully a novel patented high volume production technology of Multilayer Non-Crimp Fabric Reinforced Thermoplastic Composite organosheet (OLU-preg) by SKL, an SME based in Germany, in close collaboration with Berbetores, an SME based in Spain, primarily targeting applications in the transport vehicle and agricultural machinery sectors.
The potential market is set to grow strongly within the next 8 years to €600 million by 2023.

This project aims to commercialise a portfolio of composite material technologies based on the breakthrough OLU-preg technology to address a recognised gap in the rapidly growing composites market. This portfolio includes the primary product version that OLU-PREG® was initially designed for, glass-fibre NCF with PP matrix, as well as alternative advanced fibre-matrix combinations with carbon fibres, aramid fibres and suitable matrices based on PA, PEEK, and maybe others.
During 2016 and in the period of this project, SKL and Berbetores focused on the development of more detailed business cases for applications destined for the already identified interested clients, as well as explored initial contacts with other clients in the transport, agricultural robots and other sectors. Furthermore, they developed an elaborated business plan for the production and marketing of the novel material.
OLU-preg is a novel concept of a material, offering capabilities that are disruptive for the composites market, such as high-volume and low cost production processes, customisability to the application and unique performance attributes. During the last months, the SMEs and their partners focused on moving the market readiness level of the technology higher, by co-creating virtual prototypes for specific applications together with interested clients and building viable business cases. All results indicate that there are advantages in using OLU-preg over the competition, either in the performance, shape-ability, thickness or cost, as well as the possibility for producing at high volumes.

If the technology hits the market it means both a great growth opportunity for the companies, as they will be able to diversify in a high growth sector, as well as for their clients. On that second point, OLU-preg can provide the possibility to integrate a much larger volume of composites in the vehicles, enabling more potential for reducing weight and therefore fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.
OLU-preg visualisation of demonstrator for a potential application
OLU-preg material visualisation