Carver Non-Woven Technologies LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Fremont, Ind.-based custom compression moulder and compounder R3 Composites, will begin a rolling start-up at its new manufacturing facility on July 1, 2016.
According to a report by the online service Innovation in Textiles, the plant will be in full commercial production of single- and multi-material nonwoven products for both R3 and the broader North American composites industry by July 15.
Carver’s complete production line is fully automated, allowing the production of nonwovens with low-variance weight (density). According to the company, this leads to the production of nonwovens that are more consistent and mechanically more efficient, which can have the
benefits of reducing both cost and mass of finished applications in either thermoset or thermoplastic composites.
Carver also works with the range of fiber types, including E-glass fiber, bast natural fiber, carbon fiber, basalt fiber, and thermoplastic fiber, including virgin and 100 percent recycled polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polyamide (PA, also called nylon), polypropylene (PP), polylactic acid (PLA), as well as high-density and low-density polyethylene (HDPE and LDPE).
High levels of flexibility have been designed into the new facility to allow the company to respond to customer needs by offering products with areal weights ranging from 300 to 2,400 grams per square meter using numerous fiber types, blends and layering.
The report quotes the company saying it is able to achieve blend ratios from 80%/20% to 20%/80% for natural fibers and other fibers (fiberglass, polymeric fibers, or even carbon fiber). The diversity of fiber types helps Carver offer both single-, multifiber and layered (hybrid) mats.
The system is capable of simultaneously running up to six different fiber types, the report says, all of which can be co-mingled either in a single layer or in a structure featuring up to three different fiber types, each on top and bottom sides of the nonwoven mat. For greater design flexibility, these hybrid fiber combinations may be the same or different areal weight depending on customer requirements.