W8SVR – Neolaminates made from thermoplastic UD tapes

The new group of neolaminates marketed under the brand name W8SVR from HUESKER Synthetic are made completely from thermoplastic UD tapes, and have the potential to further improve the weight/performance ratio of thermoplastic composites, increase surface smoothness and reduce waste.

Stiffness and tensile strength in composites are largely determined by fibre length and fibre orientation. Optimum values can therefore be achieved by using continuous fibres which are completely stretched and lie straight in the intended load direction of the component, so that tensile and compression forces can be absorbed as directly as possible by the fibre. Exactly these properties can be found in UD tapes: the stretched continuous fibre (with fibre weight fractions up to 70%) is embedded in a thermoplastic matrix to which it has good adhesion. Depending on the field of application as well as the individual customer requirements, neolaminates can be produced either by weaving or Automatic Tape Placement of UD tapes.

They can theoretically have ‘any’ fibre/matrix combination, but Glass/PP, Glass/PA6, Glass/PA66, Carbon/PP, Carbon/PA6 or PA66, carbon/PA12, carbon/PC, carbon/PPS are the most commonly used materials.

Neolaminates made with Automatic Tape Placement (ATP)

Automated tape laying machines allow straight placement of UD tapes. The fibre orientation can be freely chosen by the customer so that expected forces can be absorbed in a load-compliant manner. This way, maximum stiffness and strength are achieved at lowest possible weight. At the same time, the ATP process enables the near-net-shape production of laminates. Compared to conventional organosheets, which are usually produced only in rectangular form, material scrap is reduced by up to 40 percent.

Neolaminates made from woven UD tapes

Woven UD Tape sheets have better draping properties and are therefore easier to form into complex geometries than cross-plied sheets. The mechanical properties nevertheless come very close to the properties of crossplied (ATP) Neolaminates, because the use of wide and thin UD tapes results in significantly fewer ondulation points and very little ondulation depth. Compared to traditional (also woven) organosheets, woven UD tapes achieve higher strength, higher stiffness and greatly improved surface smoothness.

Stronger, stiffer, smoother, faster

Compared to older generations, the new generation of neolaminates has significantly improved mechanical properties at the same weight per unit, allowing for additional weight reduction and/or cost benefits from material savings in the future. Due to the lower material input, the thermoplastic matrix can also be heated and cooled even faster, so that even better cycle times can be achieved than with conventional organosheets.