Carbon Fibre

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Introduction to Carbon Fibre

Renowned for its strength, durability, and aesthetic appeal, carbon fibre has become a popular material in the automotive industry. Its origins date back to 1860 when Joseph Swann first produced carbon fibres. However, it wasn’t until 1958 that Roger Bacon created the first high-performance carbon fibres, revolutionising the industry.

The Production Process of Carbon Fibre

The production of carbon fibre involves a three-stage process. The first stage, known as pre-treatment stabilisation, heats the polymeric fibres up to 300°C, triggering oxidisation and stretching. The second stage, carbonisation, introduces gases like Nitrogen and Argon and heats the fibres up to 1,700°C. The final stage, graphitisation, completes the process at temperatures of up to 2,800°C.

When treated in this manner, carbon fibre can exhibit a tensile strength of 5,600 MPa / 820k PSI. With additional heat treatment, the strength of carbon fibres can rise to an impressive 530 GPa / 77m PSI.

Key Characteristics of Carbon Fibre

Carbon fibre is highly sought after for its unique properties. These include:

  • High tensile strength: Carbon fibre is incredibly strong, making it ideal for parts that need to withstand high levels of stress.
  • Immense stiffness: The rigidity of carbon fibre contributes to its durability and longevity.
  • High-temperature resistance: Carbon fibre can withstand extreme temperatures, making it suitable for use in engine bays and other high-heat areas.
  • High chemical resistance: Carbon fibre is resistant to many chemicals, further enhancing its durability.
  • Low thermal expansion: Unlike many materials, carbon fibre does not expand significantly when heated, maintaining its shape and integrity even under extreme conditions.
  • Great strength-to-weight ratio: Despite its strength, carbon fibre is lightweight, making it an excellent choice for performance vehicles where weight reduction is a priority.

Applications of Carbon Fibre in the Automotive Industry

Given these properties, carbon fibre is an excellent material for various automotive applications. Its high strength and low weight make it ideal for use in the engine bay, where it can withstand the stress and heat of the engine while contributing to overall weight reduction. This can lead to improved fuel efficiency and performance.

Moreover, carbon fibre’s aesthetic appeal cannot be overlooked. The distinctive weave finish of carbon fibre parts adds a sleek, modern touch to any vehicle. This makes it a popular choice for exterior panelling and other visible parts, where it can enhance both the vehicle’s performance and its visual appeal.

Conclusion

In conclusion, carbon fibre is a versatile and high-performing material that offers numerous benefits for automotive applications. From its strength and durability to its weight-saving properties and aesthetic appeal, carbon fibre is a top choice for car enthusiasts and professionals alike. Explore our range of carbon fibre products today and discover the difference this remarkable material can make to your vehicle.

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