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FIBRE Mechanics and North Thin Ply Technology™ collaborate on process-efficient, high-quality prepreg panels for the boatbuilding sector

Friday, 14 July 2017


FIBRE Mechanics, experts in composite boat construction and project management, and North Thin Ply Technology™ (NTPT), a world leader in lightweight prepreg materials and process automation technologies, are collaborating to bring advanced composite solutions to boatyards in a package that addresses labour time, cost, performance and quality.


Using the experties of both companies - the FIBRE Mechanics team have huge experience in prepreg components, and NTPT are experts in prepreg automation technology – structures such as bulkheads, girders and interior joinery panels are built offsite as structurally-optimised, efficiently-manufactured, prepreg composite panels, made to the exact specification, shape and size required by the design.
 
“We have built thousands of carbon and glass structures over the years, with ever increasing engineering sophistication and build quality,” says Geoff Stock, Managing Director or FIBRE Mechanics. “The NTPT Automated Tape Laying process takes quality and precision to the next level while at the same time reducing labour hours and shortening supply chains".

FIBRE Mechanics and North Thin Ply Technology™ collaborate
on process-efficient, high-quality prepreg panels
for the boatbuilding sector


14th July 2017 - FIBRE Mechanics, experts in composite boat construction and project management, and North Thin Ply Technology™ (NTPT), a world leader in lightweight prepreg materials and process automation technologies, are collaborating to bring advanced composite solutions to boatyards in a package that addresses labour time, cost, performance and quality.


The NTPT Automatic Tape Layer (ATL) can laminate fibre from 30g to 300g at any angle - up to 2000 lin.m. of laminate
can be laminated in a day.


Using the experties of both companies - the FIBRE Mechanics team have huge experience in prepreg components, and NTPT are experts in prepreg automation technology – structures such as bulkheads, girders and interior joinery panels are built offsite as structurally-optimised, efficiently-manufactured, prepreg composite panels, made to the exact specification, shape and size required by the design.
 
“We have built thousands of carbon and glass structures over the years, with ever increasing engineering sophistication and build quality,” says Geoff Stock, Managing Director or FIBRE Mechanics. “The NTPT Automated Tape Laying process takes quality and precision to the next level while at the same time reducing labour hours and shortening supply chains".


Two autoclaves in the production hall  -  with capacity to cure components of up to 3.5m wide and 10m long.


“Unidirectional prepreg is the most cost and structurally efficient prepreg,” explains James Austin, CEO of NTPT. “Using our ATL machines, we can achieve the required specification more efficiently than weaving or multi-axial stitching machines, and offer mechanical performance benefits as there is no crimping of the fibres. In addition, we can easily incorporate very specific reinforcement patching where required, and conversely not depose material in way of penetrations, with the machine working to sub-millimetre accuracy

FIBRE Mechanics are responsible for client liaison, specification development, CNC-cut core kit, core insert manufacture, and quality assurance of build; with NTPT manufacturing the unidirectional prepreg and the laminate skin preforms at their Polish facility. The core and core insert kits join the preforms in Poland, where the final panels are built by NTPT, under the supervision of the FIBRE Mechanics boatbuilding team.”

Prepreg planks and panels on the lower shelf of the large autoclave.


There are two further levels with vacuum tables up to 3.3m width and 9.9m length.


Through the automation of this process by NTPT and FIBRE Mechanics, key challenges for – and often barriers to - composite construction of both custom and series production boats are addressed: labour time to produce complex parts is much reduced; accuracy and high quality of manufacture is consistent and repeatable; supply chains are reduced - resulting in panels that are optimal in terms of weight, cost and structural performance.

The panels are constructed on a large format table so nesting efficiencies can be maximised, or single panels up to 3.3m x 9.9m can be produced. 
 

 Media Enquiries
Marina Johnson, Clearline Communications Ltd
+44 7774 623539

Company Enquiries
Geoff Stock, Managin
James Austin, CEO, North Thin Ply Technology
 +44 7903 945041
g Director, FIBRE Mechanics
 +44 7715 539 292

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Last Updated ( Friday, 14 July 2017 )