Magna and Zoltek Shape the Future of High Volume Carbon Composites
Source: Canada News Wire
Strategic partnership, proprietary production capability help set the pace
Magna International Inc. announced that its Magna Exteriors and Interiors (MEI) operating unit, together with strategic development partner Zoltek, offers best-in-class capabilities in providing carbon fiber composite parts and systems for high-volume automotive applications to support automakers’ lightweighting initiatives.
MEI and Zoltek, the worldwide leading producer of commercial carbon fiber, have developed a low-cost carbon fiber sheet molding compound (SMC) through an exclusive global partnership. The jointly developed carbon fiber SMC material uses Zoltek’s Panex® 35 commercial carbon fiber combined with Magna’s unique EpicBlendSMC™ formulations and production expertise.
The material, named EpicBlendSMC EB CFS-Z, is part of MEI’s EpicBlendSMC product line and allows Magna to offer global manufacturers an expanded range of lightweight parts, sub-systems and semi-structural applications for automotive as well as commercial truck and other markets. Additionally, the EB CFS-Z sheet molding compound is for sale directly to molders through MEI.
MEI has recently won new business for a semi-structural component based on its EB CFS-Z SMC technology. Furthermore, one of Magna’s SMC compounding facilities has installed proprietary SMC production equipment that is optimized to compound Zoltek’s Panex® 35 carbon fiber. Together, MEI and Zoltek have extensive core manufacturing capabilities to serve customers in both North America and Europe, minimizing the cost and need to import carbon fiber or precursor materials into these markets.
“We are working with global OEMs every day to develop lightweight solutions that help meet the increased fuel economy and decreased emissions of future vehicle programs,” said Mike Andrews, VP of Operations, Magna Exteriors and Interiors. “With our EB CFS-Z SMC technology, we are now meeting the requirements for high-volume applications that call for low-cost, high-performance carbon fiber materials.”