Carbon/flax hybrid automotive door on display at JEC World

A door for a hydrogen powered car, constructed using Composites Evolution’s Biotex Flax, will be on display in the Auto Planet at JEC World.

The door panel, developed by NetComposites, KS Composites and Riversimple for the Rasa hydrogen fuel cell car, has been built using a novel carbon/flax hybrid micro-sandwich which combines the mechanical benefits of carbon with the added advantages of reduced weight, cost, NVH and environmental impact of flax.

The need to reduce weight to improve vehicle efficiency and range is leading to the adoption of carbon fibre, which is relatively expensive, energy/CO2 intensive, and can cause noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) issues.

Flax is a natural fibre which is low cost, low density, sustainable and has excellent vibration damping properties, and has been shown to work well when combined with carbon fibre in hybrid composite structures.

Brendon Weager, technical director at Composites Evolution, explained: “The Riversimple Rasa door panel demonstrates the great technical, economic and environmental benefits of the flax/carbon hybrid composites. This lightweight materials technology fits well with the ethos of Riversimple and zero emission vehicles as a whole. We fully expect this technology to be rolled out to a wider range of components in the near future.”

The door panel will be on display at the JEC World 2017 show, Paris, 14-16 March in the Auto Planet showcase area.

The Project research and development activities have been supported through grant funding provided by the Niche Vehicle Network.

www.compositesevolution.com

 

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