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Car Composites on Fast Track

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Beth Stackpole
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Major milestone
Beth Stackpole   12/15/2011 7:03:58 AM
This appears to be a significant commitment on GM's part to advance the use of carbon-fiber composites in their product development and manufacturing processes. At some point, it would seem logical that the other automotive giants will do the same. Perhaps then, it's the tipping point?

Ann, do you happen to know if this an exclusive partnership with Tejin or is that company able to forge similar partnerships with other auto makers?

TJ McDermott
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Re: Major milestone
TJ McDermott   12/15/2011 9:58:04 AM
A composite body is exciting!  We've been talking about repairs for aircraft; repairs on cars being much more common will help repair technology improve for all fields.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Major milestone
Ann R. Thryft   12/15/2011 12:41:31 PM

Beth, Teijin didn't want to divulge any more details. However, reading between the lines, the fact that the company opened a separate pilot plant in Japan, mentioned in the last paragraph, not related to the GM deal, makes me think the GM pact is more of a co-development relationship and non-exclusive, although there's been no mention of either exclusivity or non-exclusivity. Other statements in press releases and on Teijin's site sound like they want to make their material in high volumes for the auto industry as a whole.


Beth Stackpole
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Re: Major milestone
Beth Stackpole   12/15/2011 1:40:28 PM
Got it. It would makes sense over time for auto makers like GM to make investments or go beyond non-exclusive partnerships at some point as the use of carbon-fiber becomes more prevalent in automobiles. Better economies, I would think.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Major milestone
Ann R. Thryft   12/15/2011 3:31:39 PM

TJ, I couldn't agree more. The potential volumes achievable from automotive manufacturing should help catapult carbon fiber composites into the mainstream for several industries, with potential applications in aerospace, military and naval vehicles and aircraft. 


Charles Murray
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Blogger
CAFE regulations
Charles Murray   12/15/2011 9:42:33 PM
Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) has got to be a big part of this. Reaching 54.5 mpg by 2025 means automakers need to to squeeze every thing they can out of a gallon of gas.

ScotCan
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Platinum
Car Composites on Fast Track
ScotCan   12/16/2011 10:23:56 AM
NO RATINGS
Please don't comment on this subject regarding aircraft and autos in the same breath. What works for cars at ground level doesn't always work for multi-passenger aircraft at 30,000 feet and above! Although thermoplastic vs themoset has advantages, the fibres being built into the matrix are the strength carriers....thermoplastics will become brittle at low temperatures and high altitudes, both circumstances that simply don't exist in the automobile use.Besides aircraft users are looking at 25 years minimum lifespan and a lot of pressurizing and depressurizing takes place over that period of time.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: CAFE regulations
Ann R. Thryft   12/16/2011 12:25:59 PM
NO RATINGS

Chuck, I agree, I just noted in a different article's thread that It seems everyone I'm talking to lately, whether composite makers, adhesive makers, coatings suppliers or even machine vision hardware vendors, are mentioning this as the driving force behind the trends impacting their products. And I think this time the automakers really mean it.


Charles Murray
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Blogger
Re: CAFE regulations
Charles Murray   12/16/2011 5:23:31 PM
NO RATINGS
The automakers mean it. They won't have any choice in the matter.

JimBaker
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Iron
End-of-life concerns
JimBaker   12/18/2011 7:18:53 PM
NO RATINGS
There is an increasing demand that vehicles are designed with end-of-life recycling as a main driver. Europe is aiming at 95% recovery (by weight) by 2015. I am not a plastics expert so how does the carbon composite fit in here? Is it a recyclable material?

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