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06-14-2017

Design Aligned to the Material

Technical Springs of Fiber-Reinforced Materials

Several producers have tried before to develop a fiber-plastic composite spring to replace the classical metal coil springs. Danto Invention GmbH & Co. KG in Stockstadt, Germany, recently introduced an approach that absolutely suits the material applied.

Linear (left) and circular spring (right) made of FRP. Their material makes the technical springs magnetically neutral and electrically non-conductive (© Hanser/F. Gründel)

Linear (left) and circular spring (right) made of FRP. Their material makes the technical springs magnetically neutral and electrically non-conductive (© Hanser/F. Gründel)

A spin-off company of TU University Darmstadt, Danto, at this year’s Hannover Messe, presented a technical spring made of a continuous glass-fiber-reinforced epoxy resin matrix. However, this spring is not designed as a conventional cylindrical spiral. It is rather formed as an S-shaped flexible spring. This form prevents severe torsion forces, which exist in a spiral-shaped spring, and which are unfavorable for FRP materials. What is more, the design enables large and extremely variable spring deflections and characteristics (degressive to progressive). The spring is available in two versions, as a linear-FRP or circular-FRP spring, and is produced out of a prepreg by hot pressing. According to company information, the Danto spring is approx. 70 % lighter than the steel variant, offering various options of design, material intrinsic non-corrosiveness, and significantly higher frequencies of the initial eigenmodes.

While talking to Kunststoffe, company leaders said they expect the new product will be ready for serial application in an automotive chassis spring from 2020 on, replacing the suspension spring. In addition, the FRP spring may be interesting for several industries such as shipbuilding, plant construction and robotics.

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