Design of fiber composites

Fiber-reinforced plastics offer an enormous potential to save on weight. A rising number of components are made from fiber-reinforced plastics for the aerospace sector as well as the automotive industry. Fiber-reinforced plastics are also increasingly replacing conventional materials such as steel and aluminium in the machinery and equipment industry. Due to their exceptional material properties, especially carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP) offer numerous advantages. As well as being light, components made from CFRP are extremely rigid and expand only negligibly when heated. The good balance between density and rigidity also means that components have higher natural frequencies, which is particularly advantageous in cases where components are sensitive to vibration. CFRP also has better damping properties than steel, for example.

We know a lot about fiber-reinforced plastics (FRP) and this knowledge is essential in order to exploit their full potential. These materials also have to be capable of withstanding stress. This especially concerns laminates made from single layers and also the orientation and volume of fibers used. The Department of Lightweight Construction Technologies uses computer-based tools to model layers of fibers and layer thicknesses. This enables us to realistically model and evaluate components from fiber composites and enhance their quality and functionality.