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Fiberject – 3D thermoplastic cosmetic carbon parts

11 Mar 2019

Fiberject manufacturing of complex-shaped, fully-integrated and high-accuracy cosmetic carbon parts for high volumes using a thermoplastic matrix.

Fiberject – 3D thermoplastic cosmetic carbon parts

Common cosmetic CFRP parts are made from prepregs or thermoplastic organo sheets. Cosmetic CFRP parts using thermoset resins are limited in lot size and productivity, as many process steps demand accurate manual labour and the preforming, curing and completion cycle times are already near their technical limits.

Furthermore, functional elements such as clips or mounting points have to be manufactured separately and glued to the component. Organo sheets, on the other hand, have technical limits. Complex shapes with high degrees of drapery, undercuts or split lines cannot be realized. The described limits of thermoset prepregs and organo sheets prohibit the high-volume production of complex-shaped, fully-integrated cosmetic CFRP parts.

To make this possible, Mubea Carbo Tech GmbH (MCT), Salzburg, Austria, developed a novel process to produce a 3D cosmetic organo sheet that combines the design freedom of conventional thermoset applications with the countless advantages of thermoplastic series production. To validate the technology, MCT worked together with Porsche AG (Stuttgart, Germany) and produced a cosmetic CFRP component based on a series product geometry. With their patented process, MCT manages to produce the most demanding shapes of cosmetic CFRP parts using thermoplastics without wrinkles or warpage.

Intermediate products can be back moulded to integrate functional elements to the parts

Key Benefits:
> Good visual appearance, higher clarity and depth effect than standard CFRP
> Possibility to manufacture complex cosmetic CFRP components using thermoplastics
> 85% cycle time reduction and up to 50% cost reduction
> Usable for interior and exterior applications with the possibility to avoid VOC
> Recyclability due to the usage of a thermoplastic matrix

These intermediate products can be back-moulded to integrate functional elements to the parts. This process step enables functionalization with a significantly higher positioning precision than manual gluing. The final products show a superior surface quality than state-of-the-art products, as the thermoplastic surface layer compensates sink marks even after climate testing. To fulfil the highest demands of automotive standards, a customized thermoplastic compound was developed. This compound even allows for exterior application without a protective clear coat.

Can poduce most demanding shapes of cosmetic CFRP by using thermoplastics without wrinkles or warpage

This innovation has been selected as a finalist for the JEC Innovation Awards 2019 in the Automotive category.

The JEC Innovation Awards - organized by the JEC Group - are recognized as the industry’s most prestigious awards that identify, promote and reward the most innovative composite projects worldwide. The award winners will be announced during JEC World 2019 on 13 March at 4.30pm. Mubea Carbo Tech GmbH will showcase their innovation at JEC World 2019 at Booth K49, Pavilion 6. Their associated partner is Porsche AG.

» Publication Date: 11/03/2019

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This project has received funding from the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n° [609149].

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