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  23.05.17

Research in composites


UK creates composite research consortium; IPT is the only associated institution in Latin America


The Future Composites Manufacturing Hub, a research consortium for composite applications, was approved in December 2016 by the British Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). The initiative began operations in January 2017 and it was launched on May 4th at the University of Nottingham. The event was attended by more than 130 people from several industrial sectors, universities and research centers, especially from British institutions that work in the development and application of composites.

The hub includes six British universities: Cranfield University, Imperial College London, the University of Bristol, the University of Manchester, the University of Nottingham and the University of Southampton. Andrew Long, from the University of Nottingham, is the director.
Reis: IPT was present in order to identify potential partnerships in the sectors of oil & gas and mobility. Photo: University of Nottingham
 
There are 20 laboratories from other countries associated with the hub. The Lightweight Structures Laboratory of the Institute of Technological Research (IPT), located in São José dos Campos (Brazil), is one of three centers not located in North America or Europe, and the only one from Latin America.

According to market studies, the demand for composites may be five times bigger in 2030 compared to today. This big growth potential supports the decision of the British Government in investing £ 10.3 million in the hub, which should be applied in researching new design and manufacturing technologies for composites, and train a new generation of engineers. The main challenges to scale up manufacturing processes in order to achieve high production rates, and improve productivity, were discussed during the event.

IPT was represented by the researcher Vitor Luiz Reis.
International research network includes laboratories in Brazil (IPT), Australia and New Zealand
 
He was present in order to identify potential partnerships in the sectors of oil & gas and mobility: “Our participation in the hub was highlighted during the launch and I had the opportunity to talk to several people from companies and universities. I think there is a high potential for future cooperation projects that will increase the use of composite in products, even those that have high production rates.”