JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 37

carbon fibre

What outlook for prepregs
in the automotive industry?

By

The market potential for carbon fibre-based components in the
automotive industry is huge. Several studies predict automotive
will be the largest carbon fibre consuming industry within the
next ten years.
Dr Tilo Hauke,
Managing Director
SGL epo GmbH

T

he sector's expected growth will
be driven by several factors:
tighter legal requirements - e.g.
for CO 2 emissions - and economic efficiency needs since reducing the fuel
consumption of cars requires major
weight reductions. The resulting technical needs support composites usage.
Finally, marketing needs foster the
use of cosmetically attractive carbon
structures [1].

Carbon fibre consuming sectors

Comparing the automotive sector
with other large consumers of carbon
fibre prepregs is helpful to evaluate
the potential of prepregs. The wind
industry has been processing composite materials for 30 years. Here, glass
versus carbon fibre, and processing
routes, e.g. prepreg vs. RIM, compete

CFRP in automotive
Thus the strong drivers towards
CFRP in automotive are countered
by the challenges of high production
rates, complex medium/low-scale
structures, competition with established steel and alternative substitute
aluminium. The latter point translates
directly into a cost competition, as
illustrated in Figure 1. When using
CFRP instead of steel, the weight of a
reference component can be reduced
by about four times, but by two times
only when using aluminium. However,
this is counterbalanced by eight times
higher costs for CFRP, versus a factor
of two only for aluminium. Besides
these major challenges, other issues
such as non-destructive testing, repair
and recycling have to be overcome or
adapted from other industries. This
set of challenges is unique and makes

Fig. 1: Relative weight and cost for a reference
component [1]

No86 January - February 2014 /

Feature Prepreg

It still cannot be answered finally
which materials (here with a special
view on prepregs) and technologies
will benefit from the trend towards
carbon fibre-reinforced plastics
(CFRP).

with each other mostly driven by cost.
In aerospace, CFRP are replacing
aluminium more and more, from a
typical 15% share of composite materials in civil aeroplanes two decades
ago to about 50% in today's A350 or
B787 planes. In automotive, the use
of CFRP in large-scale production is
starting from scratch. The dominating
material - steel - has to be replaced,
and aluminium also appears to be an
attractive substitute.
Key technical requirements show
major differences too. Typical CFRP
components in wind or aerospace applications are often much larger than
10 m, up to >50 m, whereas even large
CFRP structures for passenger cars
don't exceed 3 metres in length, and
smaller reinforcement structures can
be below 1 m. In many cases, sophisticated structures such as car passenger
cells are complex in three dimensions.
Compared to this, wind and aerospace
CFRP components have rather low or
medium complexity structures. Another important challenge in automotive is the cycle time: production rates
of 10-100 thousand parts per year are
required, whereas rates are about 100
times lower in wind and aerospace.

jec composites magazine 37



Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014

Cover
Edito
Point of view: volume production
Contents
Agenda of Events
COMPANY & BUSINESS
In Brief
Advanced materials
APPLICATIONS
Cargo
Marine
E-car
Motorcycle
MARKET
Glass fibre
Overview 2013
FEATURE PREPREG
Laminates
Paper
Equipment
Technology
Carbon fibre
Formulation
Process
Investment
Tool
RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT
Additive manufacturing
Class A
TECHNOLOGY & INNOVATIONS
Cutting
PVC
Recycling
Design
Filament winding
Index
In the world
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Cover
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 2
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Edito
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Point of view: volume production
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 5
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Contents
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 7
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Agenda of Events
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 9
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - In Brief
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Advanced materials
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 12
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 13
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Cargo
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Marine
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 16
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - E-car
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Motorcycle
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Glass fibre
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 20
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 21
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 22
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 23
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Overview 2013
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Laminates
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 26
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 27
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 28
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Paper
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 30
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Equipment
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 32
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 33
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Technology
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 35
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 36
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Carbon fibre
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 38
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 39
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Formulation
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 41
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 42
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Process
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 44
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Investment
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Tool
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 47
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 48
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Additive manufacturing
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 50
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 51
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 52
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Class A
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 54
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Cutting
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 56
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - PVC
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 58
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Recycling
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 60
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Design
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 62
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 63
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Filament winding
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - Index
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - In the world
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 67
JEC COMPOSITES MAGAZINE - Issue #86 - January/February 2014 - 68
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