Haydale Composite Solutions has launched three new graphene enhanced carbon fiber prepregs in collaboration with SHD Composite Materials Ltd using epoxy resins from Huntsman Advanced Materials.

The products to be launched by SHD and HCS include a structural component carbon fiber prepreg, a prototype out-of-autoclave curing carbon fiber tooling prepreg capable for composite part production in autoclave processing, and a higher operating temperature prepreg for accurate tooling.

The company wanted to increase the impact resistance and compression after impact performance of carbon fiber reinforced epoxy components through the addition of graphene nanomaterials. This could enable designers to develop lighter and more efficient carbon fiber reinforced epoxy structures where impact is the principal design consideration. Applications for this new prepreg include aerospace, automotive and sports goods such as bike frames, fishing rods and racing boats.

The higher operating temperature prepreg could help produce tooling systems with increased thermal conductivity, reduced spring-back and improved accuracy, improved surface finish and hardness, better impact resistance and finally increased resistance to micro-cracking through life over currently available prepreg materials, Haydale says.

Game changer

The new graphene enhanced prepreg materials are currently going through evaluation and are available as prototype products to interested companies for their particular areas of application.

‘This has the potential to be a real game changer for the composites industry,’ said Haydale Composite Solutions commercial director Nigel Finney. ‘We are very excited about the significant improvements in thermal and mechanical performance of graphene enhanced carbon epoxy prepreg structures and look forward to further developing a novel generation of carbon fiber  epoxy prepreg materials. We believe we are on the verge of a whole new range of graphene based polymer nanocomposites with some exciting and unique properties, which we believe will be of significant interest to the composite market always looking for enhanced performance.’

This story uses material from Haydale, with editorial changes made by Materials Today. The views expressed in this article do not necessarily represent those of Elsevier.