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16th November 2017, Leuven

EconCore presents innovative technology at CAMX 2017

EconCore will be presenting its innovative technology for the continuous production of honeycomb sandwich materials at CAMX 2017, the composites and advanced materials expo taking place in Orlando, FL, next month.

The high-speed, high-efficiency continuous process can produce honeycombs from a wide range of thermoplastics and laminate them in-line with skin materials of various types, the manufacturer explains. The high level of integration is designed to help ensure exceptional cost-effectiveness, not possible with conventional technologies.

LINA - the Bio-Composite based Car with PLA Honeycomb Sandwich Design. © 2017 EconCore

It is said to be ideal for companies operating in cost-sensitive applications, including automotive and transportation, industrial packaging, and building and construction.

Lightweighting options

On it stand, the company will present different light-weighting options using various sandwich material combinations that the honeycomb technology enables. In heavy-duty transportation, applications include roofing and walls of trucks and trailers, aerodynamic elements, and cladding of vans, as well as solutions for logistics and storage.

LINA - the Bio-Composite based Car with PLA Honeycomb Sandwich Design. © 2017 EconCore

To illustrate how its portfolio is growing, EconCore is highlighting its development of high performance thermoplastic core materials made from high-end polyamides in FST compliant formulations, among other polymers with resistance to high temperatures. The company will also discuss technology it is developing for converting recycled mass-market thermoplastics into high performance core materials by controlling the thermodynamics that influence material performance.

Solar panel concept

Another product presented on the stand will be on EconCore’s award-winning lightweight polymer solar panel concept, which is one-third the weight of a standard glass solar panel while being significantly more rugged and resistant to damage. The sandwich panel is laminated off-line with the photovoltaic (PV) cells. This part of the process requires elevated temperatures, which is one reason why polyamides were the materials of choice for both, the honeycomb core and the composite skins layers.

The application of photovoltaic panels fits very well with EconCore’s honeycomb technology. The large volume demand and cost sensitiveness behind the application call for the use of very effective technologies. Furthermore, the honeycomb technology delivers a very high rigidity-to-weight ratio allowing for optimisation of the final product, the company reports.

Ultra-light photovoltaic panel based on polyamide honeycomb technology. © 2017 EconCore

“Our goal is to continuously improve upon the technology to further optimize the process and open new application possibilities,” commented Tomasz Czarnecki, COO at EconCore. “We are looking forward to interesting discussions at CAMX.”

Supporting licensees

EconCore will be supporting one of its latest US-based licensees – Wabash National Corporation, a leading American manufacturer of truck and trailer bodies. “EconCore provides the most innovative technology to produce lightweight honeycomb sandwich panels – something we have not seen in the market for a very long time,” said Gustavo Sumcad, Director of Engineering at Wabash.

ThermHex Waben’s PP honeycomb core in a wide range of thicknesses. © 2017 EconCore

EconCore will also support its Mexican licensee Fynotej, which will start up a honeycomb production line early next year. Fynotej manufactures fibres, yarns and nonwoven products, serving various markets, including producers of automobile trunk panelling.

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