Technological watch

Research lab for aero thermoplastics

Plans are to improve product properties, increase part production efficiency and extend product life cycle at the labs.Solvay and aerospace giant Leonardo have launched a joint research lab to help develop new composite materials and production processes for the aviation industry.

According to the companies, the Solvay Leonardo joint lab will focus on thermoplastic engineered materials, and in particular on welding and automatic lamination of complex and large aerospace structures. Plans are to help improve product properties, thereby increasing part production efficiency and extending product life cycle, Solvay said. Thermoplastic composites offer lightweighting for more fuel-efficient aircraft but do not require autoclave for part consolidation.

‘We believe that the partnership with Leonardo will boost our ability to develop breakthrough thermoplastic composite solutions and substantially increase their adoption in aerospace, contributing to reducing fuel consumption and CO2 emissions,’ said Nicolas Cudre-Mauroux, Solvay CTO.

The Solvay Leonardo lab will be based at the Leonardo Lab in Grottaglie, Southern Italy, and at Solvay’s material science application center in Brussels. Both companies will be able to access their internal infrastructures and collaborations with institutions, research centers and universities.

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

Publication date: 02/02/2021

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This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme for the Clean Sky Joint Technology Initiative under grant agreement No 887073.