Navigation Links
Production of FRP components without release agents
Date:11/13/2012

If you want to bake a cake, you have to grease the baking pan beforehand; otherwise the cake will stick to it. Making fiber reinforced plastic components (FRP components) is much the same: release agents are wiped or sprayed onto the surface of the mold so that the component can be taken out once it was cured. However, this approach leaves behind residues of release agents on both the component and the mold. Component surfaces must usually then be manually cleaned a painstaking and potentially critical process, since removing too much material has a negative impact on component quality. Molds, too, must be regularly cleaned but the downtime entails a not insignificant price. Now, the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Technology and Advanced Materials IFAM has developed a release film that renders these cleaning tasks. "Our film can be applied to structures of all kinds and makes it easy to release components from molds," says Dr. Matthias Ott, project manager in the Plasma Technology and Surfaces PLATO section. "It features a 0.3 micrometer thick plasma-polymer release layer that leaves no residues on the surface of the component."

This coating on the film is based on development work conducted at the IFAM on producing non-stick component molds using a low-pressure plasma process. First, the mold to be coated is placed in a plasma reactor and atmospheric pressure is reduced to one 10,000th. Next, layering gases are fed into the reactor and a plasma is ignited. Molecules containing silicon or carbon that are injected into the plasma are deposited as a thin layer. Since the molecules are highly reactive, they bond very well with the mold.

Up to 300 percent elasticity

But there's a snag: plasma reactors are at best five cubic meters in volume, which means only relatively small molds can be coated. So the researchers in Bremen, together with experts from Fraunhofer IFAM's Project Group Joining and Assembly FFM in Stade, decided to strike out in a new direction. "We wanted to make the process available for big components too, for instance in aircraft manufacturing, by means of an appropriate release film," says Dipl.-Ing. Gregor Gral, FFM project manager. While release films are already commercially available, they are very stiff. This means they cannot be deep drawn and are suited only to simple mold contours. The IFAM scientists, on the other hand, are using a film that while tough also demonstrates up to 300 percent elasticity. What's more, at less than 0.1 millimeters it is extremely thin. "That means it can also be applied to curved or structured surfaces without creasing," says Gral.

The challenge that had to be overcome was how to get the coating to stick to the film. "We developed a plasma process which relaxes the release layer. Put another way, the layer enters a state of equilibrium as soon as the plasma is turned off and no more highly reactive particles are formed, and the molecules it contains then organize themselves such that the surface no longer exhibits any reactive groups," explains Ott. As a result, the resin of the composite part does not bond with the release layer, but the release layer bonds very well with the film not detaching even when subjected to forces such as extreme stretching. In contrast to the films available to date, this new film leaves no residues of release agents on FRP components. "We are using what amounts to a new class of materials that, by virtue of their chemical structure, are harder than classic polymers," says Ott.

This film, known as FlexPLAS, has already demonstrated that it can cope with real-life production demands in the FFM development hall. It is currently being tested by a number of customers.

Matthias Ott and his colleague Gregor Gral were honored by Germany's Federation of Reinforced Plastics (AVK), an industry body, with an AVK Innovation Award 2012 for their scientific work. Taking first place in the "Innovative Processes and Procedures" category, the researchers received their award at Composites Europe, the European trade fair and forum for composites, technology and applications, at the beginning of October in Dsseldorf.


'/>"/>

Contact: Matthias Ott
matthias.ott@ifam.fraunhofer.de
49-421-224-6495
Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology news :

1. CSHL-led team discovers new way in which plants control flower production
2. Agriculture & food production contribute up to 29 percent of global greenhouse gas emissions
3. EyeLock Inc. Brings High-Tech Iris Biometric Production to Texas
4. Brainy beverage: Study reveals how green tea boosts brain cell production to aid memory
5. Clemson plant pathologist working to raise cucurbit yields, lower production costs
6. New process doubles production of alternative fuel while slashing costs
7. Cost-effective production of infrared lenses
8. Childhood obesity may affect timing of puberty, create problems with reproduction
9. The future of biomaterial manufacturing: Spider silk production from bacteria
10. A Kit for increasing insulin production
11. MARC travel awards announced for the 2012 Society for the Study of Reproduction 45th Annual Meeting
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Production of FRP components without release agents
(Date:2/3/2016)... 3, 2016 Vigilant Solutions announces today that ... Missouri solved two recent hit-and-run ... data from Vigilant Solutions. Brian Wenberg ... the victim was walking out of a convenience store and witnessed an elderly ... his vehicle, striking his vehicle and leaving the scene.  ...
(Date:2/2/2016)... Technology Enhancements Accelerate Growth of X-ray Imaging ... and computed radiography markets in Thailand ... Indonesia (TIM). It provides an in-depth analysis ... as regional market drivers and restraints. The study offers ... market attractiveness, both for digital and computed radiography. Market ...
(Date:2/1/2016)...  Wocket® smart wallet ( www.wocketwallet.com ) announces the launch of a ... . Las Vegas , where Joey appeared at ... Las Vegas , where Joey appeared at the Wocket booth ... ad was filmed at the Consumer Electronics Show (CES2016) in ... meet and greet fans. --> --> ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/10/2016)... Feb. 10, 2016  The Maryland House of Delegates ... announced that University of Maryland School of Medicine Dean ... University of Maryland Medical System President and CEO ... Medallion," the highest honor given to the public by ... Dean Reece and Mr. Chrencik for their ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... Inc. (NYSE MKT: ISR), a medical technology company and ... the treatment of prostate, brain, lung, head and neck ... the second quarter and six months of fiscal 2016, ... --> --> Revenue was $1.19 million ... December 31, 2015, a 12% increase compared to $1.07 ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... ... February 10, 2016 , ... HOLLOWAY AMERICA, a leading ... (ISPE) Rocky Mountain Chapter 21st Annual Vendor Exhibition on Thursday, February 18, 2016. ... tables for its annual event, which will run from 3:00 p.m. - 8:30 ...
(Date:2/10/2016)... Boston, MA (PRWEB) , ... February 10, 2016 ... ... system is now available on Microsoft Azure. On Azure, Arvados provides capabilities for ... “We saw clear demand for Microsoft Azure from major institutions collecting and analyzing ...
Breaking Biology Technology: