New Project Develops Composites for Construction and Automotive Industries
Repairable, Reprocessable and Recyclable
Aimplas, the Plastics Technology Centre, Valencia, Spain, takes part in the project Ecoxy, coordinated by Cidetec, to develop reinforced composites meeting the strict requirements of the construction and the automotive sectors, with the advantage that they are repairable, reprocessable and recyclable. Thirteen partners from eight different countries take part in this project, within the H2020 programme, to end in November 2020 after 42 months with the manufacturing of prototypes produced with the new material.
Fiber-reinforced composites still have some disadvantages related to the high cost and the environmental impact, since they do not meet the 3R elements (reduce, reuse and recycle), since they are hardly repairable or recyclable materials and whose reprocessing is not feasible. Moreover, most of the polymers and reinforcements used in their manufacturing come from non-renewable sources or require a very significant energy expenditure. In order to respond to these challenges, Aimplas is taking part since last June in the European project Ecoxy, coordinated by Cidetec, a Spanish technology center belonging to the IK4 Research Alliance, specialized in generating and transfering knowledge and technology in the areas of materials, surfaces and energy. The project aims to obtain new epoxy resins and reinforcements for the construction and the automotive sectors that are more environmentally friendly and more economically competitive.
For that purpose, new resin formulations are being used. They replace the hardeners commonly used by other which are dynamic, allow meeting the 3R and make possible their repair, the reprocessability of materials and also their recycling both mechanical and chemical. Besides, the project also includes the development of an advanced functionality: flame retardancy. The project partners hope to produce prototypes to be validated according to the standards and current certifications to be introduced in the automotive and construction industries. An environmental and socioeconomic assessment will be also performed.
AIMPLAS Instituto Tecnológico del Plástico
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