2197

CCE-JEC Innovation Awards 2021

In order to boost technology innovation and energy savings in the Chinese composites industry and to promote new product development and applications, a new product area was established in 2003 at China Composites Expo, and the CCE-JEC Innovation Awards became a highlight since it was set up in 2005.

CCE-JEC Innovation Awards 2021
READING TIME

12 minutes, 20 secondes

China Composites Expo 2021 was postponed due to the pandemic, but the pace of industry innovation never stops. For the 17th year in a row, the CCE-JEC Innovation Awards Programme 2021 received strong support from composite industry participants.

After evaluation by the jury, 11 composites solutions selected among 52 candidates in three categories were rewarded for their innovations. Among them, there are two winners in the Raw Materials category, seven winners in the New Applications category, and two winners in the Process & Equipment category.

The 2021 winners are…

PART ONE – RAW MATERIALS

Low-dielectric, high-transmittance composite material based on polyimide fibre

Exhibitor: Jiangsu Shino New Material & Technology Co., Ltd.
Partners: Beijing University of Chemical Technology

This composite material uses high-strength, high-modulus PI fibre as a reinforcement and epoxy resin and cyanate ester resin as a matrix. It makes full use of the characteristics of PI fibre and combines the excellent dielectric properties of epoxy resin and cyanate ester resin. The material has outstanding low dielectric and high wave transmission characteristics, as well as a certain structural load-carrying capacity, playing an important role in the design of lightweight structural/wave transmission composites. It can be used to manufacture aircraft radomes, wave transmission skins, low-loss circuit substrates, etc, and has broad application prospects in the aerospace field. Two invention patents were applied for, one of which was granted. Production place: Changzhou, Jiangsu Province, China.

Innovation points:
➢ For the first time, a high-strength, high-modulus polyimide fibre was selected as the reinforcement, which gives full play to its low weight, high strength, low dielectric and high wave transmission characteristics, and provides a new design and material selection scheme for the new generation of structural/wave transmission functional composites.
➢ The technology innovation represents a breakthrough in interface optimization and moulding technology, and solves technical problems such as static electricity in fibre prepreg processing, temperature and pressure matching in filament and composite moulding processes. The interlaminar shear strength of the resulting composite materials reaches 55MPa.
➢ The composite material offers improved properties. High-strength, high-modulus polyimide fibre has a low dielectric constant of 3.2, a dielectric loss ≤0.01 and a density of 1.3g/cm3.

ATT activated UHMWPE powder

Exhibitor: Tech-in Materials Co., Ltd.

Produced by interface modification of micronized UHMWPE powder, ATT activated UHMWPE powder has good dispersion and interface adhesion properties in a variety of resins. It greatly reduces the application threshold of aramid and won unanimous praise from customers. The product can be used as a reinforcing material for epoxy, polyurethane and nylon in applications such as friction parts, seals and transmission parts. Production place: Nanjing, Jiangsu Province, China.

Innovation points:
➢ The low-temperature plasma interface process is a long-term treatment method, with no property loss over the years.
➢ ATT-UHMWPE powder has a high polarity and interfacial adhesion and can be fully wetted and wrapped with various resins in the molten state.
➢ The dispersion and adhesion problems of ATT-UHMWPE powder in engineering plastics were completely solved, and engineering plastic materials with high strength, high modulus, and high wear resistance can be prepared.
➢ The product has filed 3 invention patents and 6 utility model patents.

PART TWO –– NEW APPLICATIONS

Metal-carbon fibre composite wires and strand cables

Exhibitor: Jiangsu Yiding Composite Technology Co., Ltd.
Partner: Shanghai Electric Cable Research Institute

In the field of overhead lines, Yiding products offer significant applicability and safety advantages compared with aluminium conductor composite cores (ACCC). Raw material and manufacturing costs can be reduced by 40% through an innovative, flexible design and manufacturing technology. The invention patents for the method and structure were granted, and a series of application patents were announced. This key technology has reached a world-leading level, with broad market prospects. This structural-functional integration and resin-based composite material design can be used in applications such as reinforced core for overhead lines, armour for submarine cables, overhead contact system (OCS) conductors, prestressed cables, reinforced materials for conveyor belts, etc. Production place: Suqian, Jiangsu Province, China.

Innovation points:
➢ New structure: the volume ratio of raw materials for each part of the steel-carbon composite single wire is precisely designed, and the reinforced core adopts the strand’s continuous curved structure, which improves the filling factor.
➢  Processing innovation: the prepreg, curing and stranding technologies are combined scientifically. The designed targets can be achieved by accurate control of the process parameters.
➢ Improved performance: the steel-carbon composite core is twice as strong as common steel strand. When the core is wound for 25D, heated at 200°C and submitted to a 50kN radial pressure, there is no loss of strength. Its modulus is 30% higher than that of ordinary carbon fibre core, with a coefficient of linear expansion much lower than ordinary steel core.

Large-curvature Z-section composite frame produced by hot diaphragm preforming

Exhibitor: Hiwing Materials Industrial Co., Ltd.
Partner: Hiwing Materials Co., Ltd.

This frame is China’s first composite product with a large-size and large-curvature Z-shaped cross-section structure produced using a moulding technology that combines automatic wire laying and hot diaphragm preforming and solidification. This composite frame can be used for the body structure of various types of civil aircraft, and the corresponding structure forming technology can be widely extended to various types of large-size composite frame structures, with broad application prospects in the fields of aerospace, high-end ships, etc. Production place: Suzhou, Jiangsu Province, China.

Innovation points:
➢ This innovative technology can reduce the number of parts of the composite body structure and further improve its structural efficiency.
➢ At the same time, the use of automatic wire laying and hot diaphragm preforming can eliminate the human factors that affect the quality of moulding processes, significantly improve manufacturing efficiency, ensure reliable and stable moulding quality, and directly increase the yield rate of civil aircraft composite structures.
➢ Non-destructive testing: no delamination, inclusions, cracks or other defects.
➢ Profile deviation: ±0.1mm.
➢ Thickness tolerance: ±10%.

E-Bike frame

Exhibitor: Engel Machinery (Shanghai) Co., Ltd. & Engel Austria
Partners: V Frames, Plastic Innovation, Coleo Design, Institute of Polymer Product Engineering at Johannes Kepler University Linz, Akro-Plastic

With the game-changing fluid-assisted injection moulding technology (fluid-melt), the world’s first thermoplastic composite e-bike frame with a closed tube geometry, integrated battery compartment and motor bracket is produced in one shot. V Frames produces the e-bike frames fully automatically in Thuringia/Germany with an Engel duo 1700 injection moulding machine. Production place: Austria.

Innovation points:
➢ The fluid-assisted injection moulding technology offers a much greater design freedom and options for functional integration compared to aluminium bicycle frames. Further advantages are the shorter cycle times, efficient just-in-time production on site and, consequently extremely shorter lead times.
➢ The e-bike frame of Ecobike 1 is ready for series production. The production time for a bicycle frame is drastically reduced compared to metallic frames, from 2-3 days to currently 110 seconds. Consequently, the lead times are considerably shorter and on-demand production is possible.
➢ This thermoplastic composite frame is fully recyclable and will be reused for other bike frames. The primary energy consumption for production is over 50% lower than that of aluminium. The material can be coloured as desired and, in this case, the subsequent painting processes are no longer needed.
➢ The product has reached the mass production scale and is in the process of market introduction and promotion. Customers such as Buddy Electric said that this V-shaped frame is 100% recyclable, effectively reducing carbon emissions by 50%, and benefits from a truly environmentally-friendly production technology.

12m-high wind-resistant rooftop lattice communication tower

Exhibitor: Harbin FRP Institute Co., Ltd.

Harbin FRP Institute’s rooftop lattice communication tower design is based on the ANSI/TIA-222-G standard and an independently-designed all-composite triangle lattice layout. This product is mainly used for the construction of 5G network infrastructure in the communications industry. Production place: Harbin, Heilongjing Province, China.

Innovation points:
➢ Design technology: the composites pultrusion-winding-weaving moulding technology aims at ensuring the operating strength of pultruded pipes or the integral strength of sections by adjusting the thickness of the different fibre layers. This technology fully represents the design flexibility of composites.
➢ Low weight, low transport and installation costs: the tower can be carried by hand in areas where technical vehicles cannot enter, providing greater convenience for construction.
➢ Security: compared to steel products, composites can absorb the stress caused by vehicle impacts by breaking off and flying over the top of a vehicle, protecting human life.
➢ Low maintenance costs: composites are resistant to acids, alkalis and corrosion. Their stainless character results in much lower full-lifecycle maintenance costs than steel communication towers.
➢ Good wave transmissivity: composite communication towers feature good dielectric properties, low dielectric constants, a low loss angle tangent, less interference with communication devices and stable signals.
➢ Non-conductivity: composite materials provide protection against electric shock casualties.

Six types of composite communication towers were already developed and 13 lattice towers and pole towers were successfully tested by customers in Harbin, Mudanjiang and Inner Mongolia. Two batches were delivered to Huawei Technologies Co., Ltd. and installed in Ulanqab, Inner Mongolia, and the Songshan Lake Base. The company is about to sign a contract for a project in Guizhou.

Sinoma 85.8 blade

Exhibitor: Sinoma Wind Power Blade Co., Ltd.

Sinoma 85.8 blades are suitable for S-type wind areas and 6.xMW series onshore wind turbines. They are all-glass-fibre onshore large blades that are independently designed and developed using pultruded glass panels. The designed annual average wind speed is 8m/s, covering the ⅡⅡ~wind class. Blade length: 58.8m, maximum chord length: 4.88m, pitch circle diameter: 3.2m, projection area: 235m², blade weight: 25t (excluding bolts, flanges and rain ring), design life: 20 years. Production place: Funing, Jiangsu Province, China.

Innovation points:

➢ Design technology: glass fibre epoxy resin material system, eggshell single-layer skin design structure. Glass fibre pultruded board is used for the spar cap, further reducing the blade’s weight.
➢ Blade performance: the aerodynamic design takes into account the blade’s complex environment and the effects of low air density to ensure it can withstand rough conditions. To meet the operating characteristics of a wind farm environment, advanced anti-corrosion and lightning protection technologies are used to improve the adaptability of blades in harsh conditions.
➢ Process: the blade is produced with an automated, integrated infusion process and the spar cap with a new pultrusion process. The blade root benefits from a circular spreading method, further improving the production efficiency of large blades.
➢ Certification: type certification work is conducted with CGC.

Intelligent nonmetallic composite continuous pipeline

Exhibitor: Shanghai F.B Oil Equipment Co., Ltd.

Intelligent non-metal composite continuous pipeline is a new type of intelligent composite continuous pipe developed by Shanghai F.B Oil Equipment Co., Ltd. as an industry pioneer. It can be applied to rod-less oil production in oil fields, drainage and gas production in gas wells, layered water injection in oil wells, electric heating oil pipe transportation and other applications. The pipeline body is mainly composed of an intelligent inner layer, a fiber reinforced layer and an outer protective layer. The manufacturing process of this project is mature, and the whole manufacturing line adopts intelligent digital control process, which is environmentally friendly, and can greatly promote green manufacture, and significantly lift the technological level of the domestic material industry.. Production Place: Shanghai, China.

Innovation points:
➢ The technology used to produce the thermoplastic resin pre-impregnated fibre material is one of F.B Company’s most important core technologies and its performance is internationally recognized.
➢ The company made a breakthrough in thermal fusion technology for wound or braided structural prepreg layers, becoming the first one in China to develop a full-thermoplastic fibre-reinforced pipe.

Low wind resistance highly reliable CFRP bobsleigh

Exhibitor: Aerospace Research Institute of Materials & Processing Technology

A CFRP bobsleigh was especially designed by the China Aerospace Materials and Technology Institute for the Chinese National Bobsleigh Team. The bobsleigh is made of TG800 carbon fibre fabric, prepreg and laminate via the autoclave moulding process. The composite and alloy parts are assembled by welding, adhesive bonding, screwing and other methods. To meet the low wind resistance, high reliability, easy control and autonomous operation requirements, computer-aided engineering (CAE) technology was used to design the bobsleigh’s structure and the aerodynamic shape was optimized using computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulation.

Key technologies such as high-impact carbon fibre composite materials and the integrated forming of a complex wing-body structure completed the design of China’s first double bobsleigh prototype, which has a significantly lower drag coefficient than mainstream international products, with significantly improved reliability and controllability. The bobsleigh also features advanced customization capabilities and small batch production.

PART THREE – PROCESS & EQUIPMENT

Matbook multi-level material data system

Exhibitor: Shanghai Xbook Industrial Software Co., Ltd
Partner: Shanghai Xbook Industrial Co., Ltd

The Matbook multi-level material data system is composed of multiple application scenarios and various levels of data management software, including a material cloud platform management system, a cloud database, desktop data software, embedded plug-ins and other modules. It is the first material database and process developed according to the “data lake/data background/data centre/data plug-in/data terminal” concept in China and abroad, and the first one in China to realize the four “website front end/desktop end/R&D software end/mobile phone end” user interfaces, which can be connected to the cloud database, providing the ability to obtain data anytime and anywhere.

Based on the material database, the composite industry software and cloud platform were developed to form the composite industry cloud and provide a complete composite product R&D cloud solution (under development). The Matbook multi-level material data system holds four software copyrights and a number of inventions and utility models are in progress and patent pending. The data system is currently used by the CRRC Industrial Research Institute and the Shanghai Carbon Fiber Composite Materials Innovation Research Institute.

Solution for waste recovery and reuse of carbon fiber composite materials

Exhibitor: Nantong Fuyuan Carbon Fiber Recycling Co., Ltd.
Partners: Worldful Polymer (Shanghai) Co., Ltd, Nanjing E-strong Technical Co., Ltd, Michelman New Material (Shanghai) Co., Ltd.

Nantong Fuyuan (FUY) has independently developed the production technology and equipment for cracking and recycling of carbon fiber composite waste with an annual processing capacity of 1500 tons, which can be fully automated and continuously operated, with low energy consumption and high performance retention rate of regenerated carbon fiber; It has high applicability, and can deal with large size, thick wall, complex structure, mixed materials and other wastes. There are two kinds of high-quality low-cost recycled carbon fiber products: non-woven felt FUY-Z series and short fiber particle FUY-S series. Products have been commercialized, involving oil and gas fields, auto parts, electronic appliances, communications, mechanical equipment and other fields. The technical equipment has applied for 15 invention patents. The recycling technology and equipment have recycled within one year operation, including over 100 tons of carbon fiber bicycle rims/tripods, over 400000 waste fishing rods/clubs/rackets, 200000 pieces of automobile parts molding leftovers of car test parts/corner parts, over 100 tons of pressure vessel tank, over 100 tons of pultruded carbon plate, etc.

Innovation points:
➢ Advanced recovery technology for large-scale extraction of carbon fibre from thick-wall waste.
➢ Development and mass production of thermoplastic sizing agents for discontinuous regenerated carbon fibre.
➢ Preparation technology for recycled carbon fibre felt-reinforced thermoplastic resin sheets.
➢ Glass fibre and carbon fibre separation technology.
➢ Development of special crushing equipment for carbon fibre composites.

.

The call for innovations for the 2022 CCE-JEC Innovation Awards Programme will be available online very soon.

More information www.chinacompositesexpo.com