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  • Periodic Reporting for period 1 - PLATFORM (Open access pilot plants for sustainable industrial scale nanocomposites manufacturing based on buckypapers, doped veils and prepregs)

PLATFORM Report Summary

Project ID: 646307
Funded under: H2020-EU.

Periodic Reporting for period 1 - PLATFORM (Open access pilot plants for sustainable industrial scale nanocomposites manufacturing based on buckypapers, doped veils and prepregs)

Reporting period: 2015-02-01 to 2016-07-31

Summary of the context and overall objectives of the project

The three main aims H2020 PLATFORM project pursues are to develop open access environmentally friendly pilot lines for the industrial production of three cost-effective, sustainable nano-enabled products: buckypapers, CNT treated prepreg and CNT doped nonwoven veils; to create an European eco-system for testing, validation and further integration of nanocomposites and to contribute to overcome the barriers that materials are currently facing to be introduced in the market as part of advanced materials and advanced manufacturing processes in sectors such as Aeronautics and Automotive.

Work performed from the beginning of the project to the end of the period covered by the report and main results achieved so far

The activity carried out by the consortium in the period encompassing months 1-18, i.e. February 2015-July 2016 has fully complied with the proposed tasks described in the Document of the Action. There has not been any real deviation with regards to the foreseen planned activities in the period except identified delays in the build-up of large scale pilot lines that are being addressed and are expected not to affect the progress of the project during the second period. Most of deliverables corresponding to this period have been achieved while few will be achieved during next period. In the course of this report explanation in each work package is presented. The collaboration among the members of the consortium has been good so far.

There have been only two issues that have altered the normal progress of the project, the withdrawal and subsequent substitution of one of the participants (DELTA TECH).

Fortunately the news of the withdrawal of DELTATECH came in the first months after the start of the project and it did not eventually pose any major inconvenience for the progress of the project. Thanks to the contacts and work of TECNALIA a new company was identified and incorporated into the project inmediately, in month 1. Furthermore the new participant, CARBURES, belongs to the same sector of DELTA TECH, automotive sector. This has made possible that all the tasks and obligations of the latter have been taken by the latter with no significant changes in the initial plan of the project.

On the other hand 21 out of the 35 deliverables corresponding to this period have been delivered with different degrees of delay. The number of deliverables originally planned was high the PC, with the agreement of the PO, decided to give priority to the correct development of the activities foreseen in the project and prepare relevant deliverables event a delay was already detected while less relevant deliverables could wait and be submitted later in the project after the delivery planned time.

Some delayed deliverables accumulated delays of less than two months. In these cases the delays were mostly related to the short time initially scheduled between the initial delivery of the draft to be revised by the rest of participants of each taskforce and the final approval and submission to the EC. Following a general overview of the objectives and progress of the work in each of the active workpackages (WP) in this period is provided.

During the WP2, that of the analysis of potential applications the performance requirements and service conditions of the two industrial sectors (aeronautics and automotive) and the manufacturing steps of the three nano-enabled materials, were specified. Regarding the aeronautical performance, it is expected to improve impact resistance by more than 30% and fracture toughness by more than 50%, while in the automotive, the improvement of impact resistance obtained in each case for the head children impact a Head Performance Criterion is targeted.
These data were also used for the final selection of the components that will be built, namely the part of the fuselage and stringer at the Aeronautical industrial and the Bonnet of the PANDA vehicle for the Automotive industrial use case (WP8). Based on the declared requirements and the conclusions of the partners an open access platform (e-PLATFORM), which will function as an online profit-making product and services shop merchant, was created. Additionally, in the framework of the 3rd WP a preliminary business plan with an updated market analysis and a business model and feasibility study for the e-PLATFORM was presented in the respected deliverables, including a SWOT analysis.
Focusing on the technical part of the project key parameters were studied and analyzed in order to control and optimize the manufacturing process for each stage of the current batch BP manufacturing process (WP4). Based on this, the large scale design was developed and completed and the definition of parameters for Quality Control of the product, have been set up. Validation tests were realized and first materials were provided to the respected partner, while corrective actions for the optimization of the process and thus the redesign of the BP pilot line, was conducted. To verify the results, a small scale prototype was designed and constructed.
Moreover, the conceptual design for the production line of CNT/TP treated pre-pregs with defined process and functional specifications and having the trade-off analysis' result of the tests, was realized (WP5). It was concluded that ready industrial solutions are the safest way for the implementation of such a large scale pilot line. First industrial trials took place and the produced material will further be tested during the project.
During the WP6, the semi-continuous pilot line for fabricating of CNT-doped veils was designed and constructed. Trials with CNT-doped materials were conducted, while different thermoplastic polymers according to the specifications of the end users, were tested. More parameters (i.e. CNTs concentration) were also studied and the properties of the produced materials were measured. The operating conditions of the pilot line, towards the capacity and the quality of the materials, were optimized and materials was already send to the end users, who proceeded to the first trials.
For the successful realization of the PLATFORM project, environmental, health and safety issues are of high importance. For this, a methodology that provides guidance for designers and manufacturers of new machinery involving ENMs and NEPs, was developed. An initial toolkit, the PLATFORM-SbD tool (WP9), was accomplished and a strong collaboration with the NANOREG2 project in these fields, was established. The challenge is to integrate all nanosafety issues into the well-established design process of machinery according to EHSRs of the MD, in order to guarantee new safe production processes.

Progress beyond the state of the art and expected potential impact (including the socio-economic impact and the wider societal implications of the project so far)

The project has progressed in line with the initial established planning.
In this 18 month period WP2 related to the analysis of the current situation for the existing pilot plans and define the specifications of the components for validation in each of the two use cases, Auto and Aero has been finished and the foreseen results have been reached.

Furthermore WP3, related to the platform business development and operation is running as planned. The construction of the technology platform is on going, with a first draft available and continuously updated with the collaboration of the partners. It will be presented during the Mid term review in September 2016. The reason to the delay in constructing the e- platform, which does not affect the course of the project, is appropriately explain within next section.

WP4, WP5 and WP6 related to the up-scale the existing line to large scale pilot lines are progressing as planned. Individual delays have been detected for the build-up of the pilot plants that do not affect the rest of the activities in a large extend and WP leaders are working together with the partners involved to overcome the problems encountered. Details are gven in the following section. In WP7 the integration of the technologies in common composites manufacturing routes is addressed. For the Aero use case the activities are running as planned while the activities related to aero are suffering delays mainly due to the selection of materials. Partners are aware of this situation and will adapt the activities to be addressed and re-schedule the WP. WP9 is related to standarisation issues. It is running as planned eventhoug a revision of the main activities was done with the corresponding reschedule of the WP as it is explain in the next section. WP1 and WP10 related to management, exploitation and Dissemination aspects respectively have progressed adequately.

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