Three different components have been developed: a coach body lateral flap, a motorcycle frame substructure and an interior aircraft catering panel. A sandwich structure has been used for the aircraft panel combinig PPS, PEI and carbon fibers; a PP and glass laminate has been defined for the body coach component and a PP with glass laminate with local reinforcements has been developed for the motorcycle application. Finally, some prototypes of these different components have been produced.
Composites with continuous fibres offer an extreme strenght and stiffness to weight ratio, wich leads to high loaded lightweight structures; Textiles prepegs with unidirectional fibres offer a hight degree of utilisation but are limited in their deformation behaviour to produce complex parts in an efficient way of medium and large series production, without wrinkles, fibre distorsion and voids. Knitted fabrics offer partial solutions of these problems (high deformation and drapability, no wrinkles) but do not reach the expected results, because of their delicate handling, poor mechanical properties, high void content and, mainly, the difficulty for obtained net shape preforms. Fabrics with intermingled or comingled yarns, because of the flexibility of the process, offer unlimited solutions for net shape preforming, with local reinforcements. It can be foreseen that the low production price of these structures will reduce production costs of structural parts by a high percentage. The nearly unlimited drapability, combined with fast processing cycles and thermoplastic matrices will open the applications field of automotive industry for composites and also for secondary structures in aeronautic industry by drastic price reduction and net shape processing. These new textile technology, combined with low-cost thermoplastic processes like thermoforming open new opportunities for thermoplastic composites in medium scale range of production. The proposal addresses research areas 1.1, 1.2, 2.2, 3A.3 and 3B.3 of the Brite/Euram programme. The five SMEs involved in the consortium have great difficulties to afford an own large R&D programme. Therefore, this project complies with the scope of the Craft programme.
Funding SchemeCRS - Cooperative research contracts
09582 Freiberg (Sachs)
20009 San Sebastián