Thermoplastic structural components with functional integration
To further improve the strength of fiber-reinforced injection molded composite parts, combines injection molding with thermoforming of organic GF/CF/ sheets.
Fabric made of endless fiber in a thermoplastic matrix is heated, shaped in the injection mold and then back injected. This process can be used to add ribs for extra stiffness and to integrate other functions.
Fast and highly automated
Cycle times are similar to typical values for injection molding (around 30 seconds) and are chiefly determined by the cooling time in the mold. The process can be seamlessly integrated into an injection molding operation. In other words, FiberForm technology is ideal for manufacturing lightweight structural components for large series production.
Lower production costs with better properties
Direct compounding/injection with the IMC saves energy and material costs (0.3 to 1.0 €/kg cheaper than processing LFT pellets). As a result, it has widely replaced LFT in manufacturing semi-structural components. The mechanical properties of finished parts are also better because the process is less destructive to the fibers. The fibers are only processed once (instead of twice if pellets are used) and they are fed into the melt in the direction of processing. Process steps such as pelletizing, cooling, and remelting are omitted.
Highly-automated manufacturing cells
Like standard injection molding, FiberForm can be easily automated. The outcome is compact, fully-automated manufacturing cells.
Like injection molding, FiberForm can be combined with almost all special manufacturing processes. This opens up infinite potential for functional integration and component design.
|Process||Laminate Insert moulding Technology|
|Description||Forming and back injection of fiber-reinforced thermoplastic semifinished products|
|Typical applications||Seat shells and backs, instrument panel supports, soft top compartments, side impact protection, underbody groups, door modules, technical underhood components, battery mountings, semi-structural components|
|Typical annual volumes||10,000 to 4,000,000 items|