Call for partners: Joint Market and Technology Study on High-Performance SMC

The Joint Market and Technology Study on High-Performance SMC with the aim to discuss the potential of a next generation of SMC in industrial applications will start in June 2017 and will be provided by AZL Aachen GmbH in cooperation with the Institute of Plastics Processing (IKV) at RWTH Aachen University. Inspired by their international partner companies, AZL and IKV will elaborate a broad overview of latest developments for the further improvement of SMC properties as well as systems and processing technologies together with the partner consortium. Material-related application development as well as scenarios for the solution of identified action fields will also be part of this joint study.

Large-scale industrial manufacturing equipment for SMC is also available in AZL´s new research facility at RWTH Aachen Campus | Picture: Schuler Pressen GmbH

The 12-months study is designed as a joint study involving players along the entire value chain. Participants will benefit from the knowledge of all study partners and experts who are involved in the project. | Figure: AZL Aachen GmbH

Companies along the entire SMC value chain and those interested in the SMC market are invited to join. The Joint study allows participants to benefit from the knowledge of all study partners and experts who are involved in the project.

In order to replace metal parts, SMC (Sheet Molding Compound) is a qualified and first choice solution since many years. With short and continuous fiber-reinforced systems using both carbon and glass fibers with customized resin compounds, High-Performance SMC (HP-SMC) constitutes the next generation for reduction of CO2 emissions and weight savings. HP-SMC also offers huge potentials in realizing parts with high performance at reduced costs compared to conventional continuous fiber-reinforced parts. In comparison to other materials, a high number of interdependencies between material and processes which are both challenge and potential determine the HP-SMC.

The Joint Market and Technology Study on High-Performance SMC of AZL and IKV aims to broaden the understanding of these interdependencies by providing insights into SMC applications and technologies, key challenges, and technological solutions for establishing High-Performance SMC. This will serve as basis for the elaboration of design guidelines, a target-oriented development and to open up new business opportunities. In close collaboration with the industrial AZL Workgroup which was established in an initial workshop in 2016 with more than 60 participants from the industry, including several automotive OEMs, scope and content of the 12-months study have been developed. During several meetings, the industrial workgroup defined different joint research and development initiatives to build a toolbox for HP-SMC, one of them being the Joint Market and Technology Study on High-Performance SMC.

AZL partner companies and members of the IKV association of sponsors can participate at a reduced fee. The finalization of the consortium and information on the content and approach of the study will be conducted in an information event during the 3rd Workgroup Meeting of the High-Performance SMC Workgroup on May 31, 2017 in Aachen. Information event and Workgroup Meeting are open for all interested companies. The deadline for participation in the study is June 15, 2017.