9T Labs Materials

Leverage the power of carbon fiber composites

Take full advantage of thermoplastic composites at scale to maximize the performance of your parts and to transition to a more sustainable manufacturing approach.

Ditch metal, embrace carbon fiber composites

Lighter than aluminium

+59%

Stronger than titanium

+800%

Stronger than steel

+1100%

COMPARING CARBON FIBER TO METALS

Carbon fiber outperforms metals

Due to its exceptional strength-to-weight ratio, carbon fiber provides high strength and durability while remaining significantly lighter than traditional metal materials. 9T Labs' Additive Fusion Technology™ is made to help you process and maximise the properties of these materials.

INTRODUCING Our Advanced Materials

Carbon fiber & thermoplastics

Thermoplastics

Thermoplastics act as a glue, holding the carbon fibers in place and adding toughness. They also give the composite consistent properties in all directions, along with defining its resistance to heat and chemicals.

Carbon fiber

Carbon fiber provides the strength, mainly in the direction the fibers run, making the material strong in specific directions. It needs a material to bind it together, which is where thermoplastics come in.

What Materials we USE

Continuous carbon fiber reinforced thermoplastics

Industries choose continuous fiber reinforced thermoplastics as a composite material due to their exceptional mechanical, functional, chemical, and recycling properties.

The continuous carbon fibers contribute to heightened strength, stiffness, and overall durability, making it an ideal substitute of metal for demanding structural requirements. Unlike short fibers, continuous reinforcement enhances structural integrity, making these composites advantageous where superior strength and resistance to deformation are essential.

Moreover, the unique characteristics of thermoplastics, including recyclability, flexibility in manufacturing processes, and enhanced chemical properties, further contribute to their widespread use in highly regulated industries like the aerospace and medical ones.

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Our Partners

Leading the research on materials

We partner up with leading material suppliers and experienced research partners to develop high performance materials that can be used in manufacturing:

Interested in the properties of our materials?

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OUR CHOICE FOR THE MATRIX

Why thermoplastics over thermosets?

Thermoplastics are sustainable, lightweight, and exceptionally durable. They perform exceptionally well in challenging conditions, withstanding fire, water, heavy loads, and even enduring multiple sterilization cycles in medical applications. The unique ability of thermoplastics to be remelted and reshaped opens up various manufacturing possibilities, facilitates repairs, and supports end-of-life applications such as recycling.

In contrast, thermosets cannot be melted and reshaped after hardening, making reuse and recycling more challenging. Additionally, thermoplastics exhibit higher impact resistance than thermosets, excellent corrosion resistance, and can withstand harsh chemical environments.

Recyclability and Sustainability

Thermoplastics can be remelted, remolded, and recycled without compromising their physical properties, extending their lifespan through recycling into new applications.

High volume and precision manufacturing

Compression molding of thermoplastics enables high-volume, precise manufacturing with fewer manual steps and low cycle times compared to thermoset processes.

Enhanced MECHANICAL properties

Compared to thermosets, thermoplastics offer excellent fracture toughness and impact resistance, making them versatile and reliable for various high performance applications.

INTRODUCING Our Advanced Materials

It's all about high performance thermoplastics

Enhanced temperature stability

Thanks to their molecular structure and inherent properties these materials are designed to endure temperatures higher than 150 °C without structural or property changes.

Excellent durability and resistance

The molecular chains are engineered to resist degradation when exposed to challenging environments, ensuring the material remains scratch-resistant, robust, and stable over time.

Superior mechanical properties

High-Performance Thermoplastics like PEKK, combined with continuous carbon fibers, gain enhanced stiffness in all directions, which means they can be used for a broader range of applications.

30%
Stronger than titanium

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OUR CHOICE OF PLASTICS

Why High-Performance Thermoplastics?

When looking for alternatives to metal, thermoplastics like PEKK are the preferred option for several industrial applications.

50%
Lighter than aluminium

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200%
Stiffer than steel

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We help you to find the best
material for your product

Frequently asked questions

FAQs about our materials

What is PEKK used for?

Polyetherketoneketone (PEKK) is a high performance thermoplastic polymer known for its excellent mechanical and thermal properties. It finds application in various industries due to its versatility and durability. Contact us at info@9tlabs.com to discover some concrete applications within your industry.

How does 9T Labs combine continuous fibers with short fibers?

9T Labs AFT process uses a deposition system, the Build Module, which is equipped with continuous carbon fiber deposition system and a classic FFF deposition for plastic or short fiber filled plastic deposition. This allows us to place continuous fibers where needed and switch, also within a layer, to a polymer infill. This feature allow an optimal use of costly carbon fibers and a maximal freedom of fiber design.

What are continuous fiber reinforced composite materials?

Continuous fiber reinforced composites are strong and lightweight materials made by combining a matrix (often a thermoplastic or thermoset polymer) with continuous fibers (like carbon or glass). Unlike traditional composites with continuous fiber used as a Uni-Directional (UD) laminate or a woven fabric, 9T Labs Additive Fusion Technology™ places continuous fibers along a desired path leading to a desired stress introduction and other optimized mechanical characteristics.

What is the difference between continuous and discontinuous reinforcement in a composite material?

Continuous reinforcement in composites uses long, unbroken fibers that extend throughout the material, enhancing its strength and stiffness. In contrast, discontinuous reinforcement features short fibers, typically chopped, which can simplify manufacturing and reduce costs but generally offer less strength. Woven fabrics, while made of continuous fibers, can be considered in between these two types, as they maintain fiber continuity but may not align fibers optimally with the load paths. When features like holes are introduced, they can disrupt the fiber continuity, impacting the composite's overall strength. The choice of reinforcement type depends on the application's specific requirements for strength, manufacturing simplicity, and cost.

What is compression molding used for with thermoplastics?

Compression molding is a common method for shaping thermoplastics, where the material is placed in a heated mold cavity and compressed under pressure to take its shape. This technique is known for producing parts with excellent surface finish, low void content below 1%, high reproducibility, and precise tolerances, aligning with industry standards similar to injection molding. Additionally, compression molding offers the flexibility to combine different preforms, incorporate out-of-plane fibers, reshape fibers in three dimensions, integrate other filler materials like chopped fibers or pellets, and embed metallic inserts, making it a versatile choice for complex manufacturing needs.

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