Urban Air Mobility

ASCEND program update: Designing next-gen, high-rate auto and aerospace composites

GKN Aerospace, McLaren Automotive and U.K.-based partners share goals and progress aiming at high-rate, Industry 4.0-enabled, sustainable materials and processes.


Novel processes for hybrid thermoset-thermoplastic pultruded parts

CFRP pultrusion and pullwinding specialist Epsilon Composite combines thermoplastic overmolding with traditional thermoset processes, demonstrated through aircraft struts and industrial applications.

Carbon Fibers

Inside Teijin’s thermoplastic tape expansion

Teijin is qualifying its second thermoplastic tape line in Heinsberg, Germany, that will significantly expand the company’s presence in this material segment.


New polymer expands composites options in demanding environments

Aromatic thermosetting copolyester offers unique properties, availability in multiple form factors.


One-piece, one-shot, 17-meter wing spar for high-rate aircraft manufacture

GKN Aerospace has spent the last five years developing materials strategies and resin transfer molding (RTM) for an aircraft trailing edge wing spar for the Airbus Wing of Tomorrow program.


Evolution of the one-piece, all-composite Funny Car body

Large, one-piece drag racing vehicle bodies require extreme lightweighting and precise layup skills. Specialist MTCcorp shares how its John Force Racing Funny Cars have evolved over the past 25 years.

Hi-Temp Resins

Flexible, induction-based heating for thermoplastic composite part repair

Spinning off from a German Aerospace Center (DLR) research project, msquare GmbH’s technology aims to innovate and enable repair for high-temperature thermoplastics.

Additive Manufacturing

Low-void, large-scale, high-volume 3D-printed composites

Among its many composites-related projects, Oak Ridge National Laboratory recently installed its first AMCM test cell, combining extrusion with compression molding for fast, low-void, low-porosity thermoplastic composite parts.


3D printing and AFP join forces in automotive demonstrator

Bavarian auto industry and TU Munich research how to reduce molding costs by combining continuous fiber and 3D-printed composites.

Urban Air Mobility

Multi-flange RTM frames enable radical rear fuselage design

The Clean Sky 2 Advanced Rear End (ARE) demonstrator combines patented new frame design, thermoset and thermoplastic composites and smart tooling to advance aircraft design and cut weight, cost and production time.

Carbon Fibers

High-performance sustainability and cost-efficiency advance with HiPerDiF

In the latest chapter of the HiPerDiF (High Performance Discontinuous Fibre) story, commercial production is on the near horizon for high-performance composite materials that are both sustainable and formable, leading to simpler, more cost-efficient composites manufacturing.

Glass Fibers

Multi-material steel/composite leaf spring targets lightweight, high-volume applications

Rassini International was challenged by Ford Motor Co. to take weight out of the F-150 pickup truck. Rassini responded with a multi-material steel/composite hybrid leaf spring system that can be manufactured at high volumes.


Long-fiber liquid crystal polymers

High-performance, injection moldable grades to be offered with long glass, carbon fiber options.

Can 3D printing debottleneck prototype tool production?

Preliminary IACMI/ORNL study evaluates viability of using polymer additive tooling to compression mold SMC.


Pressurized steam-based composites recycling for full fiber reclamation

Longworth’s DEECOM process for composites recycling claims to produce intact fiber and resin reclamation with near-virgin properties.


Envisioning high-volume, 100% composite wheels

Vision Wheel debuted its first carbon fiber composite wheel at CAMX 2021, claiming its low-cost, high-volume process can be scaled up for performance vehicles, UTVs and — ultimately — passenger EVs.


Hybrid battery cover: CAE approach

A Q&A with Benedikt Fengler, co-founder and composites simulation specialist for Simutence provides a more in-depth take on moldfilling, warpage and assembly simulations performed in HRC Group’s SMC battery cover feasibility study.  


NASA Institute develops carbon nanotube-based composites for Mars spacecraft

The five-year project employs computational modeling techniques to build composite panels that are three times stiffer and stronger than current carbon fiber to enable manned missions to Mars.


Modular draping system shows potential for wrinkle-free, automated dry fiber layup

Through research programs FlexProCFK and AutoBLADE, Leibniz University and partners are developing a robot-mounted layup system for complex CFRP parts.


Modular cutting and stacking system advances flexible, fully automated operations

Integration of next-gen cutting and stacking systems into production lines brings new level of efficiency, quality control.


All-electric motor boat tests the waters for recycled carbon fiber

RS Sailing aimed to create a fully electric, rigid inflatable boat (RIB) that is produced as sustainably as possible. A few iterations later, the Pulse 63 is ready to hit the water.


Moving toward portable, digitized composite part repair

Using digital twin technology, American GFM’s portable, automated inspection and scarfing system shows potential for on-site, data-driven composite aircraft part repair.

Glass Fibers

Riding pretty: Hybrid upper control arms move to pickups

Short-glass/PA6 with metallic inserts reduces mass, running torque, joint wear on the Ram 1500 half-ton pickup truck.


Short carbon fiber compounds expand reach of thermoplastic composites

With fiber weight fractions of up to 50% and an array of thermoplastic matrices available, injection molding compounds are expanding composites’ capabilities.

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