Fair advisory council

Presentation & interview with our fair advisory council

Beiratsmeeting-CE-Dez2017_2.jpg

behind, left to right: Daniel Schäfer, Dr. Elmar Witten, Thomas Schwarz, Klaus-Peter Welsch, Philipp Zimmermann, Dr. Walter Begemann, Jens Plass
front, left to right: Estella Copei, Peter Egger, Heike Wolfangel, Daniel Stumpp, Dr. Kai Fischer, Olaf Freier
missing:
Dr. Michael Effing, Uwe Lang, Dr. Gunnar Merz

 

Chairman: Peter Egger, Director Advanced Technologies - ENGEL AUSTRIA GmbH

What are the biggest achievements of last decade's composites industry from your point of view?

Thermoplastic composites in injection molding were successfully introduced to the market - that was very important! Thermoplastics are the key to sustainability. Injection molding is the most effective technology for mass production.

Which current innovation inspires you the most?

I don't want to highlight anything particular here. What excites me is that the boundaries between different materials and procedures are blurring and the fears of contact are getting smaller to try something different. Experts are talking to each other who were recently not able to identify common interfaces.

What are currently the biggest challenges for the composites industry?

Affordable lightweight construction and a lack of confidence that can only be achieved through increased use - a chicken and egg problem. It is still difficult to place composite components in existing structures, but this is necessary to get into large quantities here - well thought-out completely, holistic fiber composite constructions are unlikely. This makes hybrid designs more important in order to get the topic of joining under control.

A look into the future: What will composites achieve in 10 years?

I believe that in 10 years we will be ready to use composites exactly where and in the quantity we need them - in actual lightweight construction. In combination with other technologies and materials, we will not only be able to obtain pure structural components but also present new functions and surface qualities.

What are the biggest achievements of last decade's composites industry from your point of view?

The greatest achievements are probably in the demonstration of various composite applications with very different requirements. Besides aircraft construction, increasing rotor blade lengths for offshore wind turbines and applications in automotive and mechanical engineering are just two examples to mention here. 

Which current innovation inspires you the most?

The production of the BMW i3 is certainly an important step on the way to serial production of CRP components. The latest developments in the field of carbon concrete are also inspiring. In 2016, the Federal President's Future Prize was awarded for this achievement. 

What are currently the biggest challenges for the composites industry?

The cost of carbon fibers have to continiously drcrease in order to be able to use the material competitively. This also applies to the costs of component production through improved coordination along the value chain.

A look into the future: What will composites achieve in 10 years?

In the next decade, multi-material design will increasingly become more important. In particular, alternative mobility options and increased functional requirements promote the interaction of composites with metallic materials.   

What are the biggest achievements of last decade's composites industry from your point of view?

Production of large wind rotor blades (90m) and the Airbus A350.

Which current innovation inspires you the most?

Tape processing with fast lasers (tape placement)

What are currently the biggest challenges for the composites industry?

Cost-effective and robust processes (such as hybrid injection molding and HP-SMC)

A look into the future: What will composites achieve in 10 years?

Aviation, automotive and wind energy remain as the major markets ahead of the rest with mass applications involving fiber optics and carbon in aviation. Breakthrough in the construction sector (see AFFAN, Premier Composites)

What are the biggest achievements of last decade's composites industry from your point of view?

The use of composites in the field of larger series production in the automotive industry has shown the often questioned suitability for an industrialized development and production chain in cycle times relevant to large series production. Combining the material know-how of the composite community, including the highly experienced aerospace industry with the high-volume production expertise of the automotive industry has led to an enormous mutual transfer of knowledge, which today forms the basis for future large-scale production.

Which current innovation inspires you the most?

The steady increase in projects to apply industry 4.0 - technologies to the composite industry. The wide variety of different fiber types, matrix plastics, metallic semi-finished products, materials and their combinations in hybrid materials or structures as well as the numerous successive processing operations and available production methods require comprehensive expertise and high planning effort in order to realize a cost- and performance-optimized solution. Long value-added chains are on the one hand expensive and error-prone but on the other hand they are also predestined for the IT integration of material, structure and production data. The networking of companies and production systems offers enormous opportunities for the faster implementation of high-performance composite products and robust production processes in order to meet the high planning costs and the ever-increasing demands for fast reaction times to the requirements of volatile markets.

What are currently the biggest challenges for the composites industry?

In order to further develop competitive advantages towards other lightweight construction materials the material, time and cost efficiency in the development and production of composites must be continuously improved. This requires a close and mutually trusting dialogue between materials science, production and application technology at the very beginning of development processes.

A look into the future: What will composites achieve in 10 years?

In addition to the "pure" composite components that are still typical today composites will be an essential building block for tailoring material properties in hybrid structures in the future.

What are the biggest achievements of last decade's composites industry from your point of view?

To have found the way from high-end applications (aviation) to a wide variety of applications and markets.

Which current innovation inspires you the most?

Use of composite lightweight construction and system integration in prostheses.

What are currently the biggest challenges for the composites industry?

The transformation of manufacturing from manufacture to industrial production processes (without losing quality).

A look into the future: What will composites achieve in 10 years?

Matter of fact in the use of multi-material design.

What are the biggest achievements of last decade's composites industry from your point of view?

Lightweight construction is an important mosaic piece in order to make the world of today a better place, for example by reducing weight, increasing efficiency or optimising resources. And fibre-reinforced composites form the actual basis for this. We are therefore on the right track but not yet at the goal.

Which current innovation inspires you the most?

Innovative new materials and the increasingly complex mix of materials in hybrid lightweight construction - including conventional and new materials - as well as digitalization and automatization in the manufacturing process.

What are currently the biggest challenges for the composites industry?

The necessary cost reduction in the entire process chain by the manufacture of fiber composite components, the necessary fusion of hybrid lightweight construction with other materials by product development and the recycling of composite materials.

A look into the future: What will composites achieve in 10 years?

Fiber-reinforced composites are cost-efficiently established in the market and widely used where it makes sense, thanks to the consistent further development of raw materials and the clear symbiosis of processing operations with other lightweight construction materials. And the world is therefore even lighter, more efficient and faster than it is today. World improvement. Fiber by fiber. Kind of.

What are the biggest achievements of last decade's composites industry from your point of view?

Without lightweight construction with composite materials the energy turnaround in wind power sector would not have been possible. Competitive wind turbines and in particular their rotor blades can only be built by lightweight construction using fiber-reinforced composites.

Which current innovation inspires you the most?

Ich persönlich bin gespannt, wie sich die Technologie des 3D-Drucks mit Composites entwickelt.

I personally am curious to see how the technology of 3D printing with composites develops.

What are currently the biggest challenges for the composites industry?

I see the greatest challenges in mass production, energy efficiency in raw material production and especially recycling in all parts of the value chain.

A look into the future: What will composites achieve in 10 years?

In 10 years' time we will experience that composites complement or even partially replace steel and aluminium in many industries. I am thinking of traditional metal applications such as shipbuilding or the construction industry.

What are the biggest achievements of last decade's composites industry from your point of view?

Composites have expanded the material horizon enormously. New design possibilities, individual design possibilities adapted to the application and completely new products have been created. Wind turbine blades are just one example. In addition, since their earliest use the materials have enabled lightweight construction with outstanding mechanical properties. Spectacular applications, especially in racing and motorsport but also in aviation show what is possible. Composites have been the material group for visions ever since the materials were created.

Which current innovation inspires you the most?

The range of applications for composite components is enormous. The automotive sector has as fascinating applications as aviation, the sports and leisure sector, the electrical and electronics industry, or the construction and infrastructure sector. It is difficult to name a single application. However, if you look at a GRP sluice gate or an entire bridge, you realize what the materials are capable of doing with the right alignment. In addition, I'm always enthusiastic about the possibilities of hybridization, as BMW for example recently introduced the "carbon core" concept in the 7-series.

What are currently the biggest challenges for the composites industry?

Many potential users are still unaware of composites as a material group. Unfortunately, the possibilities are often very limited. Composites are much more than just lightweight construction. The materials have many other positive properties that are often overlooked. In addition, the materials often have to contend with prejudices that do not correspond to reality. Work must continue to be done to present a realistic picture, especially in universities and industry with the materials managers. Composites are not per se the better material. However, products can be advantageous if they are designed correctly and tailored to the individual application. This has to be understood so that composites can be a realistic alternative.

A look into the future: What will composites achieve in 10 years?

The view of composites has changed. Away from exaggerated expectations and beyond unfounded resentment composites are a real alternative material. No better or worse than other materials, they are simply a realistic alternative that receives the necessary attention. Composites are materials with enormous potential if they are allowed to unfold and used properly. This is why the composites market will continue to grow, both beyond existing applications and into new areas.

What are the biggest achievements of last decade's composites industry from your point of view?

The composites industry has weathered the crisis and is back on the road to good profits, stable earnings and healthy growth - thus building resources for development and superior product and production quality.

What are currently the biggest challenges for the composites industry?

Maintaining and ideally expanding quality standards,"Made in Germany" retains and reinforces its importance.

A look into the future: What will composites achieve in 10 years?

iComposite "- the components become intelligent, are equipped with sensors, solar cells and/or whatever innovative and useful things are invented and will find their place in a component.