Carbon Fibre Reinforced Plastic (CFRP) automotive panel technology has been available now for some time as a crossover from motorsport although many solutions have been proposed to expand their use into a broader market. Although occasionally used on OEM programs, in the past they have been restricted to mainly niche supercars.
Gurit has solved many of the perceived barriers for using advanced composite body closures in production cars, one of the biggest being quality. Composite parts must meet both the build quality and surface quality of traditional metal parts.
Class-A surfaces have traditionally not been achievable with advanced composite parts due to ‘print through’ of the carbon fibres caused by the differing coefficient of thermal expansion (CTE) of carbon and epoxy resin.
Gurit’s patented surface film is an epoxy resin layer sandwiched between a glass and a thermoplastic scrim, which upon curing forms a homogeneous surface layer. As with SPRINT™, Gurit’s surface film is designed for ‘out-of-autoclave’ curing.
Approved and recommended by DuPont, (DuPont Automotive Systems is the largest global manufacturer of automotive OEM coatings) Gurit’s SF 95 surfacing film reduces the porosity and print-through normally experienced when dealing with carbon fibre, ensuring the car’s looks are as good as its performance.
The strict surface quality requirements of today’s OEMs means Gurit produces advanced composite parts that require no re-work to the surface after the part has been moulded.