13th March 2017, Lelystad
A leader in diversified chemicals SABIC is expanding its UDMAX range of continuous fibre thermoplastic composites with the addition of carbon fibre-reinforced tapes, which will be on display at the JEC World exhibition in Paris, this week.
The new materials are UDMAX GPE (glass fibre-reinforced polyethylene) and UDMAX CPA (carbon fibre-reinforced polyamide).
“SABIC is looking into entering new markets with the addition of the carbon-fibre reinforced tapes to our existing portfolio of continuous fibre thermoplastics,” said Andrey Turchin, SABIC FRT business leader. “Having unique mechanical properties, they enable the production of stiffer, stronger and more lightweight parts and can be used in variety of applications such as pipes, pressure vessels, sporting goods.”
At the JEC, SABIC will be targeting the automotive, transportation, building and construction, and energy markets. In addition to the new carbon-fibre reinforced tapes, the company will display a roll of UDMAX GPP 45-70 tape, which is over 2000m in length.
For the first time, SABIC will present to the market material forms made out of UDMAX GPP 45-70 tape: plain-woven and cross-plied (0/90) material. These material forms gain interest for manufacturing of the lightweight thermoplastic (sandwich) panels for transportation and building and construction markets due to excellent stiffness, strength and impact resistance, the company reports.
Earlier this year, SABIC’s fibre reinforced thermoplastic composite technologies were used in the ICEhouse – an iconic structure designed by the architect William McDonough and built at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland.
Thermoplastic composite sandwich floor panels with skins made out of UDMAX GPP 45-70 tape replaced plywood being up to 50% lighter, with higher abrasion and impact resistance. The thermoplastic composite floor panels do not absorb water and therefore do not decay, increasing safety in use and lifetime of the flooring. Another application was the tubular composite structures made with UDMAX GPP 45-70 tape, a continuous fibre reinforced polypropylene, which partially replaces aluminium L-shaped profiles.
Convertors can potentially benefit from the many advantages offered by UDMAX tapes compared to alternatives. The tapes have been developed to enable lightweighting, have short manufacturing cycle times, and are also recyclable. Application process techniques include lamination, weaving, overholding, tape laying and tape winding.
UDMAX tapes are made using a unique proprietary HPFIT technology, which quickly and precisely enables the spread and combination of thousands of glass or carbon fibres with a thermoplastic matrix, according to the manufacturer.
As a result, the tapes are said to have a high density of fibres, high-quality fibre impregnation in the resin matrix, minimal void content, fewer broken fibres and a resin-rich surface. They can be used to form composite materials that can in turn be used to manufacture lightweight components with sought-after performance compared to alternative materials.