Composites Evolution will showcase its Biotex Jute reinforcement range at the Composites Engineering show, which takes place on 12-13 November at the NEC, Birmingham, UK.
The range, initially comprising of plain weave and 2x2 twill in weights from 300-600g/m2, offers the benefits of premium natural fibres such as flax – including a favourable stiffness-to-weight ratio - but at a price which rivals glass fibre.
Launched earlier this year, Composites Evolution says the fabrics can reduce the weight and environmental impact of composite parts, making it an attractive alternative to glass fibre. Biotex Jute can be used in a wide variety of applications such as automotive, marine, mass transport, construction, sports goods and industrial products.
Jute fibres are extracted from the bark of jute plants, which are annually renewable and fast-growing, and the processes used to refine the fibre have low environmental impact. Jute can also be recycled at the end of its life.
The fabrics also offer desirable thermal, acoustic insulation and vibration damping properties, and are suitable for use in most standard composite moulding processes.
Dr Brendon Weager, Managing Director at Composites Evolution, commented, "The composites sector is keen to switch to natural fibre alternatives but, until now, price implications have made it difficult to justify changing from materials like glass fibre. We are always striving to develop new, cost-effective materials that meet customer demands, and with Biotex Jute we have managed to create a natural fibre reinforcement that is finally able to compete with glass fibre."
Composites Evolution will present its full range of sustainable composite materials, including rovings, textiles and prepregs, at their stand C128 at Composites Engineering 2013.