Additive manufacturing with continuous carbon fiber is sustainable. The ultra lightweight material is very durable and perfect for the use in extreme environmental conditions.
We partner up with experienced research partners to develop high-performance materials that can be used in manufacturing:
Thermoplastics such as PA12 or PEKK are sustainable, light and still very durable. They can be used in extreme conditions, can resist fire, water, high loads and also multiple sterilization cycles in the medical field.
Imagine steel reinforced concrete that could be indefinitely reshaped after hardening. This is basically what thermoplastics enable in the world of composites. The unique feature of a thermoplast to be remelted and reshaped opens many possibilities in terms of manufacturing routes, repairing and end-of-life use such as recycling.
Using thermoplastics does not only allow you to choose from a broad pallet of materials which can be tuned according to your application but you can also circumvent hazardous compounds as used in classical composites industries. The chemical resistance of thermoplastic is outstanding. Coupled with the recycling possibilities, the market segment of thermoplastics is increasing heavily.
Thermosets can not be melted and reshaped after hardening, and thus not be re-used or recycled that easily. In addition, thermoplastics show higher impact resistance than thermosets, show excellent corrosion resistance and can endure harsh chemical environments.
Bringing an end of life solution, thermoplastics are much more sustainable than thermosets. Furthermore, biobased thermoplastics such as PA11 enter the market more and more and start to compete with other thermoplastics.
PA12 is the polyamide with the highest resistance to hydrolysis. Therefore, it is often used in humid environments and in applications in which the material is in contact with oil and gas. But also in sports and leisure applications PA12 can be a good fit.
PEKK shows outstanding chemical resistance and has excellent flame retardancy and low smoke generation and toxicity. As PEKK withstands sterilization processes it can be used in medical applications. PEKK has the strength to replace metal components in extreme conditions such as in aerospace.
The stiffness, low weight and stress resistance make carbon fiber an ideal material for the production of industry-grade composite parts.
9T Labs uses standard elastic modulus type (HT) carbon fibers with a modulus of 230 GPa as a standard material. Comparing the specific modulus of such a carbon fiber with aluminum, steel and titanium, the clear benefit of carbon fibers is obvious: carbon fibers bring stiffness at very low weight. Using the entire range of carbon fibers, low elastic modulus fibers up to high elastic modulus fibers (200-300 GPa,) the stiffness can be tuned according to your project.
When embedding the carbon fibers in a thermoplastic matrix the fibers are kept in place in order to show their full potential. 9T Labs has composites with up to 60% fiber volume content, ensuring sufficient matrix material to keep the fibers in place but using as many fibers as possible at the same time.