Germany: Thermoplastic Composites Covestro Starts Production of CFRTP Lightweight Materials
Covestro announced that it has begun commercial production of a continuous fibre-reinforced thermoplastic composite material (abbreviated to CFRTP). The novel lightweight, high-strength and aesthetic material can be produced efficiently and is attracting interest from various customers and industries, the company announced.
Leverkusen/Germany — To leverage this market potential, the manufacturer has expanded its production capacity and developed the Franconian town of Markt Bibart into a location for high-tech materials. It is located in the vicinity of renowned universities that conduct intensive research into the further development of composite materials. Covestro now employs 50 people in Markt Bibart, and further expansion is planned. Overall, the company has invested a mid-double-digit million euro sum.
The company's CEO Patrick Thomas mentioned that the driving force behind all these developments was sustainability. According to the CEO, the company wants to benefit society and improve people's quality of life, but minimize the impact on the environment.
Michelle Jou, who heads Covestro's global polycarbonate business in Shanghai added that the electronics industry and other industries want stronger and lighter materials that can be used to produce thinner parts and integrated functionality. In addition, there was a desire for more efficient production. With their new high-tech material, the manufacturer intends to close this gap.
The composite material is based on continuous carbon or glass fibers impregnated with polycarbonate, thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) or other thermoplastic resins. From this, the company produces uni-directional reinforced tapes and sheets for further processing by customers. These products can be tuned to infinite combinations, giving designers new creative opportunities. Another special feature of CFRTPs is that they feel and sound like metal, but offer the design freedom of plastics.
CFRTPs are attracting interest in such diverse segments as the electrical and electronics industry, the automotive business, household appliance manufacturers and furniture producers, medical technology, sports goods manufacturers, shoe producers and the luggage industry. The tapes and sheets products are delivered to customers all over the world for further processing.