Category: AUTOMOTIVE
22. October 2015   11:15 am
Andy Stecher

Andy Stecher
Elgin, IL

Photo courtesy Plasmatreat.

Photo courtesy Plasmatreat.

 

The World Solar Challenge, taking place this week in Australia, features hyper-efficient solar cars traveling from Darwin to Adelaide—some 3000 kilometers (over 1800 miles) to the south. The event represents the ultimate in automotive lightweighting. As the World Solar Challenge website notes:

It’s all about energy management! Based on the original notion that a 1000W car would complete the journey in 50 hours, solar cars are allowed a nominal 5kW hours of stored energy, which is 10% of that theoretical figure. All other energy must come from the sun or be recovered from the kinetic energy of the vehicle.

Plasmatreat is thrilled to have a horse in this race, so to speak. Atmospheric plasma pretreatment of carbon-fiber-reinforced plastic (CFRP) components for the Punch Powertrain Solar Team’s racing car, Punch One, is an integral part of the car’s speed and strength.

Stiffening ribs in previous iterations of the car, necessary to protect it from strong race-condition vibrations, had been laminated—but this process required multiple layers and lengths of prepeg strips, a labor-intensive process  that also increased weight. Plasma pretreatment enabled the use of Loctite EA 466 instead, a fast-curing two-component epoxy resin adhesive.

The production manager of the 16-strong solar car team – who is just 23 years old – enthusiastically backs his team’s decision to use atmospheric pressure plasma in the new car to improve the adhesion of the CFRP components. This approach not only greatly reduced the time taken to pretreat the CFRP, but also achieved a 3 kg weight savings compared with the previous method.

CFRP is 60 percent lighter than steel and around 30 percent lighter than aluminum, but extremely stable. The total weight of Punch One is just 165 kg (around 364 lbs.), with the heaviest single component being the solar battery.

Needless to say, we are excited and proud to cheer on our contender as it traverses Australia this week. Go Punch One!

Recommend
Category: Miscellaneous
15. October 2015   8:17 pm
Andy Stecher

Andy Stecher
Elgin, IL

In 1998, Plasmatreat launched the very first Openair® plasma jet for inline surface treatment. This technology was a revolutionary new approach in industrial assembly operations to improve bonding and facilitate perfect adhesion of materials such as non-polar Elastomers.

Since then, thousands of Openair® plasma systems have been installed and operating around the globe. Systems with up to 16 plasma jets can be positioned around complex profile shapes for complete, fast inline treatment. However, treating job runs of irregularly shaped profiles in small quantities has remained a time-consuming challenge—until now.

The new Openair® Plasma Automatic Profile System, PlasmaXCT, is fully automated and controlled by a high-performance XYZ-axis. All plasma jet positions can be programmed for precise applications and then permanently kept as “recipes” that are easily accessible through the HMI. Calling up these recipes allows any operator to effortlessly precision-adjust the plasma jets in 2 minutes or less.

The result: A reproducible, safe, and high-quality surface treatment. You can see a brief demonstration of how it works on our Plasmatreat YouTube channel .

For a more in-depth presentation, we’d like to cordially invite you to an online Product Feature Exposition on Tuesday, October 20th, hosted by our colleagues in Europe:

  • 11 am Eastern/ 10 am Central U.S. Daylight Time
  • (5 pm Central European Standard Time)

 

Just click here to register. We hope to see you there!

Recommend
Category: Miscellaneous
9. October 2015   5:19 am
Andy Stecher

Andy Stecher
Elgin, IL

Just a quick note today to let you know about Surface Science Corner, a recurring feature here on the PlasmaBlog courtesy of Professors K.L. Mittal and Robert H. Lacombe.

Drs. Mittal and Lacombe write fascinating, in-depth pieces for us on the science behind plasma technology. Their most recent installment has the dual purpose of presenting a book review on the recently published Adhesion Science: Principles and Practice while simultaneously diving into the ubiquitous world of adhesives technology. It’s an illuminating read.

We are lucky to have the expertise of Drs. Mittal and Lacombe in our corner, in addition to the fine talent we possess in house. As always, please let us know if you have any manufacturing challenges—adhesion-related or otherwise—that Plasmatreat’s technologies may be able to help with.

Recommend