Porcher has created Greenlite, a new generation of high performance renewable reinforcements for the composites industry, based on pure cellulose fibres.
Porcher explains that Greenlite materials are biodegradable and highly compatible with biobased resins, making them suitable for the production of 100% bio-based composites on a large scale. They say that Greenlite reinforcements are made of continuous and non-twisted cellulose fibres, resulting in high mechanical properties. They also have a relatively low density of 1.5 g/cm3, compared to 2.6 g/cm3 for standard glass fibres. Procher say the combination of low density and good mechanical properties allows biocomposites to be made on an excellent weight/performance basis.
Porcher say that key benefits of Greenlite reinforcements include:
- Pure cellulose: 100% bio-based and biodegradable
- Low density for lightweight parts
- High strength and stiffness to weight ratio compared to other natural fibres
- Very regular structure, easy to impregnate with standard processes
- Easy handling and cutting
- High quality continuous fibres with homogenous and consistent properties
- Good compatibility with bio-based resins
- Translucency with appropriate resin systems
- Unique look and whiteness among renewable reinforcements
According to Porcher, Greenlite products can be combined with cork cores to make extremely lightweight sandwich structures. These assemblies also possess interesting properties in terms of thermal and acoustical insulation. They explain that Greenlite reinforcements can be used advantageously in hybrid constructions with carbon fabrics, making very strong laminates, while preserving the aesthetic aspect and lightness of carbon.
The Greenlite product range covers woven and unidirectional technical fabrics from 100 to 400gsm and can be processed using standard equipment with no modifications to the existing technology, and Porcher say the reinforcements are particularly suited to infusion and RTM processes using standard or bio-based polyester or epoxy resins.
Source: Netcomposites.com, 2011-10-18.