Tag: Cars

13

Jan

Carbon Fibre Monster X 6×6 Mercedes-Benz X-Class Monster X

The carbon fibre Monster X Concept is an X-Class with three axles and six wheels. The design study is planned for production and features bodywork made entirely out of carbon fibre. The body is far from stock, as it features widebody wheel arches, several rear fins and spoilers, sport bars, more aggressive front and rear bumpers, and a hood scoop. The truck bed has been theoretically sprayed with a “protective structural paint” for duty.

Whereas most 6×6 pickups we’ve seen, such as the G-Class or the Silverado, are intended for off-roading adventures, the carbon fibre Monster X is actually lowered. Carlex sees this pickup getting a job as a safety car on a racetrack, albeit a far cry from the traditional safety car. The front and rear winches are for pulling wrecked racers rather than stuck mud crawlers. It also features carbon ceramic brakes as part of the track spec.

29

Jul

Volvo Carbon Fibre Panels

Volvo to replace body parts with energized carbon fibre panels

For automobile manufacturers, the electric elephant in the room continues to be bulky and weighty battery packs. This week, Volvo unveiled an innovative potential solution to the problem that it has been working on for the past three and a half years with other European partners; replace steel body panels with carbon fibre composite panels infused with nano-batteries and super capacitors.

The conductive material used around the vehicle to charge and store energy can be recharged via the vehicle’s regenerative braking system or via the grid. When the system and motor requires a charge, the energized panels behave like any traditional battery pack and discharge accordingly. According to Volvo, the material charges and stores faster than a typical system.

Using a Volvo S80 as a test platform, the team replaced the vehicle’s trunk lid and plenum cross member over the engine bay with the new material. Volvo claims the composite trunk lid, which is stronger than the outgoing steel component, could not only power the vehicle’s 12 volt system but the weight savings alone could increase an EV’s overall range and performance as a result.

Under the hood, Volvo wanted to show that the plenum replacement bar is not only capable of replacing a 12 volt system but is also 50 percent lighter than the standard steel cross-member and torsionally stronger. The very much revolutionary concept, chock full of cost and engineering challenges, presents an interesting solution that could not only reduce overall weight but increase charge capacity relative to a vehicle’s surface area.

 

When it comes to weight savings, the battery pack in Tesla’s Model S for example, not only adds significant cost but also brings with it over 1,000 lb (453 kg), making the electric argument a difficult one for many. With Volvo’s concept, that huge chunk of weight would not only be lighter under this scenario, but would be spread out evenly over a vehicle’s body. In theory, vehicle handling and performance characteristics would thus improve as a result of this revised displacement idea.

But the idea of using body panels as battery packs does come with its share of particular concerns. Lamborghini, McLaren and Pagani charge a hyper-premium for their exotics as a result of extensive carbon fibre use, so for this idea to become reality and make it to mass production would require a significant reduction in the cost of carbon fibre.

Then there’s the issue of broken panels or those damaged in an accident. In the event of an accident not only would body panels be extremely costly to replace but they could present unprecedented problems for emergency crews. Electrical surges coming from broken body panels could be potentially harmful were rescue persons unaware of the underlying electrical issues.

On a fossil fuel-powered note, cars using traditional 12 volt batteries, which weigh anywhere from 45 – 61 lb (20-28 kg), this technology could also prove beneficial by relocating that hefty chunk of lead from the nose of the car out across larger surface areas.

According to Volvo, weight savings of 15 percent or more could be achieved by replacing a vehicle’s traditional body and relevant electrical components with these new nano-infused carbon fibre panels. Volvo is also keen to point out the positive sustainability aspect that comes as a result of such weight reduction.

Source: Volvo

20

Jun

PolyOne Develops Carbon Fibre Underbody Brace for C7 Corvette

PolyOne announced its lightweight, carbon fibre-reinforced polymer (CFRP) underbody brace is now offered as a performance upgrade for the current C7 generation of GM’s Chevrolet Corvette Z06. The Corvette Z06 won last year’s Car and Driver Lightning Lap with the fastest speed, which also ranked as the second fastest lap time in the history of the event.

 

 

The company produced the continuous carbon fibre braces using pultrusion technology. PolyOne says the braces reduce weight compared to aluminum. The braces also increasing flexural stiffness for improved structural integrity and long-term fatigue strength.

“Our Glasforms team evaluated several composite types and identified a solution with optimal performance. The carbon fibre-reinforced composite part is 17% lighter than the stock aluminum part, and the composite held up well in GM’s extensive vibration, shake and road test regimen,” said Matthew Borowiec, general manager, PolyOne Advanced Composites – the company’s new platform it created after it acquired Gordon Composites and Polystrand. “We are proud that our team’s expertise in materials and engineering is helping to boost the legendary performance of the Corvette.”

General Motors uses the Corvette as a validation vehicle for many of its new technologies. GM has a 60-year history with composites. In 1953, Molded Fibre Glass launched the first production model of the Corvette with fibreglass body panels. In 1972, the Corvette’s body panels were made with sheet molding compounds (SMC) for the first time. All Corvettes since 1973 have used SMC body panels. As recently as last year, Continental Structural Plastics introduced its TCA Ultra Lite body panel for the Corvette.

Buy carbon fibre, fibreglass and other composites online in Australia at Beyond Materials

According to  http://compositesmanufacturingmagazine.com

29

Nov

Recycled Carbon Fibre Moves into Automotive

Chery New Energy Automobile Technology Co. Ltd. in China has pledged to apply recycled carbon fibre from ELG Carbon Fibre to its eQ1 electric vehicle. The ultimate goal is to expand the fibre into higher volume vehicles.

 

ELG Carbon Fibre Ltd. (Coseley, UK) and Adesso Advanced Materials Wuhu Co. Ltd. (Wuhu, China) have concluded a MOU regarding cooperation to develop lightweight composite components for the automotive industry based on ELG’s recycled carbon fibre materials.

 

The initial focus of the cooperation is to investigate applications that have been identified by Chery New Energy Automobile Technology Co. Ltd. (Wuhu, China) on the Chery eQ1 electric vehicle. The goal is to further reduce the weight of the eQ1, which already makes extensive use of aluminium technology, through selective use of carbon fibre composites. The longer term intent is to then apply the knowledge gained from these projects in Chery’s conventional vehicles.

Following a preliminary evaluation of ELG’s materials by Professor Fan Guanghong’s team at the Advanced Manufacture Technology Center of China Academy of Machinery Science Technology (CAMTC), Chery has suggested initial applications to be investigated, and providing that technical and commercial targets are achieved.  ELG, Adesso and Chery intend to enter into a definite agreement to start full-scale production of these parts in Wuhu. This agreement would see ELG Carbon Fibre establish a carbon fibre recycling operation in China when sufficient volumes of recycled carbon fibre materials are required.

Frazer Barnes, managing director of ELG Carbon Fibre, says, “The eQ1, through its extensive use of aluminium, already represents a huge advancement in lightweighting for the Chinese car industry. We are pleased to be working with the innovative engineering team at Adesso and Chery to help them take the next step forward and start introducing carbon fibre composites into their vehicles”.

Dr. Bo Liang, president, chairman and CEO of Adesso, says, “Working together in this project enables us to address the barriers preventing large-scale use of carbon fibre composites in automotive applications —namely cost — through the use of recycled materials, design and manufacturing and collaboration with experienced partners. Our vision is that cooperation leads to an automotive composites hub in Wuhu. It also strengthens our vision on sustainability of the composite industry in China.”

Gao Lixin, deputy general manager of Chery Automobile Co. Ltd. and general manager of Chery New Energy Automobile Technology Co. Ltd., says, “There is a strong need to reduce the weight of both new energy and conventional vehicles in order to meet environmental and performance targets. We believe carbon fibre composites have an important role to play in this and through our cooperation with ELG and Adesso on the eQ1 project we will gain a significant learning curve advantage that we can then use in our conventional vehicles.”

 

Buy carbon fibre, fibreglass and other composites online in Australia at Beyond Materials

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