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03/11/2019 - Fagor Arrasate presents its latest innovations for the composite industry at the JEC

•The company will showcase prototypes for the automotive sector manufactured using highly efficient and cost-effective processes. •One of the projects in which Fagor Arrasate has participated as an associate partner has been nominated for the JEC Innovation Awards 2019 in the category of Industry and Equipment.

Fagor Arrasate, a specialist in the design, manufacture and supply of deforming and forming machine tools, will present its latest innovations for the composite industry at the JEC trade fair. In this occasion, the showpieces are a series of prototypes made for the automotive sector, which will serve as an example to illustrate competitive manufacturing processes, with a high level of automation that seek to reduce the typical manufacturing costs. The fair will be held in Paris from 12 to 14 March.

The prototypes will be shown in the exhibition space at the company's stand. This includes a hybrid leaf spring for heavy trucks. This item, part of a vehicle's shock absorbing system, is usually made entirely of steel, but the solution presented by Fagor Arrasate combines composite and steel sheet. This construction reduces the weight of the component by as much as 40%, improving the overall efficiency of the vehicle.

A bonnet of a Maserati made in the framework of the European Eurostars programme is another one of such pieces. This three-year long project opted for the use of the Compression Resin Transfer Moulding (C-RTM) technique to manufacture a bonnet with a complex geometric shapes and a high-quality aesthetic finish. This is a very cost-competitive process compared to prepreg, not normally used in the manufacture of complex geometric shapes due to its limitations. However, Fagor Arrasate has managed to respond to this challenge with high-quality results.

The third piece exhibited is a cargo barrier, developed in a joint project with Grupo Antolín. For the patented Novaform Plus process, Fagor Arrasate designed the production line and required equipment, resulting in a single-stage process to manufacture structural parts of thermoplastic material, thereby greatly improving the productivity and profitability of the process.

Finally, the company will display a preform of an anti-intrusion bar manufactured in an automatic cell. The manufacturing process is based on a multi-axial carbon fibre fabric, which is then treated in an infrared oven. Once high temperatures have been reached, the desired 3D shape is obtained with a mould. One of the great novelties in this process was the inclusion of a transfer system for quick part handling and a robot with ultrasonic blade for the removal of excess material.

All these solutions are examples of the added value Fagor Arrasate offers its clients. "The know-how, the specialization in personalized solutions, and the constant development in innovation allow us to offer our clients processes that reduce costs and improve the quality and efficiency of production", emphasizes the Business Unit Manager of Fagor Arrasate, Estibalitz Arregi. These attributes, complemented by a professional service and the ability to configure complete lines with all auxiliary and complementary equipment, make Fagor Arrasate an ideal partner in a sector such as that of the composites industry where multiple processes are the norm.

Recognition of innovation

Fagor Arrasate's commitment to innovation has received recognition from the JEC, the leading international composites fair. A project led by AZL Aachen, the international benchmark research centre for lightweight materials, in which Fagor Arrasate contributes as an associated partner, has been nominated for the JEC Innovation Awards, which recognise the best composite solutions in the category of Industry and Equipment. The project in question consisted of the manufacture of an ultra-fast machine (up to 500 kg/hour for the prototype) for the mass production of individual customised preforms, based on a part flow approach in combination with the placement of unidirectional tapes (in dry fibre, thermoplastic, prepreg...) by laser-assisted in situ consolidation.

Fagor Arrasate has the widest portfolio of products in the field of metal forming and offers its customers profound  knowledge of the sector after a long-standing experience of more than 60 years.  In the area of composites, for more than 40 years we have had a complete range of press solutions, including all auxiliary and complementary equipment, for the treatment of composite materials.  Fagor Arrasate is a founding member of the MONDRAGON Corporation, one of the largest European industrial corporations, made up of 70,000 professionals.

The Group has 17 research centres, 6 production plants and 3 Service Hubs distributed internationally to ensure global supply and after-sales service. In addition, Fagor Arrasate has a production plant in China and a dozen centres located internationally to guarantee service and direct contact with its customers, particularly in the USA, Germany, India, Russia, Brazil, Mexico and China. Its product portfolio covers leading solutions in mechanical and hydraulic presses, complete stamping systems, transfer presses, robotic press lines, press hardening, forging; cross-cutting, longitudinal, combined and multi-format lines; flattening under tension lines; special systems for forming metal parts, strip profiling, flexible profiling, equipment for cutting rotor-stator and dies, among many others.

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