You are here

A one-piece carbon fiber wheel

News International-French

15 Sep 2014

Carbon Revolution produces a one-piece carbon fiber wheel: one of the most technically advanced wheel and one of the most advanced lightweight technologies on any car.

The scientists and technicians who created the first one-piece carbon fiber wheel saw it equally as an immense challenge and a vocation. The wheel was tested in Germany to the highest TüV wheel standards and is available for purchase. The company developed techniques to ensure a high-quality manufacturing process in the most critical automotive application.

Lightweight wheels are perhaps the greatest single performance enhancement on a car. Basic physics tells that the gyroscopic effect requires significant effort to move a spinning object – the heavier it is, the more effort is required. Lighter, stiffer wheels allow the driver to accelerate quicker and change direction more precisely.

Each composite part design has its own special number of layers and orientations of fibers to create the desired combination of strength, weight, and stiffness. This is the beauty of carbon fiber: with metals the choices are much more limited, but with carbon fiber they are almost limitless.

Metal parts, particularly aluminum usually do not fail due to a single catastrophic load but because of small, repeated stresses (called “fatigue”). Each stress cycle on an aluminum part, however small, takes the material that much closer to fatigue failure. Designers realize this limitation and attempt to “over build” their parts for a lifetime of use. When properly designed and manufactured, carbon fiber composite materials have an almost infinite fatigue life. This property means that designers no longer have to “over build” parts to deal with fatigue as is done with aluminum components leading to even lighter parts.

CFRP materials are not subject to the adverse affects of corrosion like metals are. The fact that they do not degrade via these mechanisms means that designers do not have to account for degradation caused by corrosion throughout the products life. This again provides further opportunities for weight saving and efficiency gains in vehicles and reduced through life costs.

More information: