Shaping the automotive industry with vacuum infusion composites
Automotive manufacturers have a lot of demands to meet. Their consumers want quality products at affordable prices, while investors want to make profits. This means that automotive manufacturers need to use the most optimal methods for producing quality automotive components.
The automotive industry uses a lot of composite materials in its structural and mechanical components, including:
- Interior work
- Engine covers
- Air vents
In the past, producing these composites has been an expensive and difficult task. However, with the vacuum infusion process, it’s more affordable and reliable to produce composites in the automotive industry.
What is vacuum infusion?
Vacuum infusion is a process of saturating porous fibers with resin to produce a solid composite material. As the name suggests, vacuum infusion works through the removal of air during the process.
A vacuum bag is placed over fibers fitted to a mold. A resin hose is attached to this mold and it feeds resin to the mold while the vacuum removes air and increases pressure in the mold. This results in a thorough saturation of the fibers, while the excess resin is captured in a resin trap in the vacuum. After the resin has had time to settle, the new composite is removed from the mold and is ready for the next step in its manufacturing process.
Benefits of vacuum infusion in the automotive industry
Vacuum infusion is a cost-effective solution for producing strong, lightweight, high-quality automotive composites. There are several benefits to the vacuum infusion process, including:
- Reduced labor costs — Vacuum infusion uses reusable vacuum bags, which helps reduce labor costs and improves the amount of productivity your team can spend in other areas of manufacturing.
- Reduced materials costs — Vacuum infusion has a high resin-to-fiber ratio, and any excess resin is collected in a resin trap in the vacuum. This means that there is little resin wasted, which reduces your materials costs in the long run.
- Cleaner work environment — Resins can be messy to work with, but vacuum infusion eliminates some of the messiest steps. There is no messy brushing or rolling of resin since the resin is directly introduced via a hose into the vacuum bag. This also reduces the amount of resin fumes that permeate the workplace atmosphere.
- Consistent product — Since the vacuum bag and molds are reusable, and the resin thoroughly saturates the fibers, the products are consistent and reliable.
Composites One is the most trusted composites distributor in North America
If you’re looking for the ideal composites for your automotive manufacturing process, look no further than Composites One.
At Composites One, we have thousands of composites materials in stock in our 44 distribution centers across North America. Contact us today to learn more about the composite materials and services we offer for automotive industries.
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