AGC Asahi Glass has unveiled a new technology enhancing the performance of carbon fibre reinforced thermoplastic (CFRTP).

By using its fluoropolymer to improve existing CFRTP, AGC's new technology improves the material's impact resistance, reduces the product defects that occur under high temperature moulding and also improves yields.

The enhanced CFRTP allows for a wide range of applications such as cars, aircraft and sport products which require lighter-weight materials. In addition to CFRTP, this technology can also be applied to improving engineering plastics when superior tolerance against high load and high temperature is required.

The mainstream alternative material to metals is currently carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP). However, it has been considered unfit for mass production due to long moulding times and the inability to recycle leftover material generated in the manufacturing process.

CFRTP, in contrast, offers short moulding time and good recyclability, but has challenges which limit its practical application. Specifically, it is difficult to impregnate CFRTP with resin during moulding and to ensure sufficient mechanical strength.

In an aim to further expand CFRTP applications, AGC has developed a new CFRTP improvement technology which utilises the company's fluoropolymer. Using AGC's fluoropolymer to improve polyamide 6, a thermoplastic resin, has successfully boosted impact resistance by 30% compared with conventional CFRTP.

It has also succeeded in reducing the water absorption rate, a cause of polyamide 6 thermal decomposition, by 30%. This achievement has made it possible to not only reduce product defects that occur under high temperature moulding, but also improve yields.

AGC intends to help expand the applications for CFRTP by proposing its new technology to various manufacturers in the transportation equipment field.