bio!CAR, a new conference for the car industry, will launch in September. Focussed mainly on bio-based materials in automotive engineering, the international meeting will debut at the Exhibition Centre Stuttgart on 24 and 25 September as part of COMPOSITES EUROPE 2015. The conference will be organised jointly by bioplastics MAGAZINE and the nova-Institut in cooperation with trade fair organiser Reed Exhibitions and the German Federation for Reinforced Plastics (AVK).
The bio!CAR conference is aimed at reflecting the trend towards using bio-based polymers and natural fibres in the automotive industry: more and more manufacturers and suppliers are betting on bio-based alternatives derived from renewable raw materials such as wood, cotton, flax, jute or coir, all of which are being deployed as composites in the interior trims of high-quality doors and dashboards. According to the Hürth-based nova-Institut, the European car industry most recently (2012) processed approximately 80,000 tonnes of wood and natural fibres into composites. The total volume of bio-based composites in automotive engineering was 150,000 tonnes.
Bioplastics are equally useful for premium applications in the auto sector. Bio-based polyamides from castor oil are used in high-performance components, polylactic acid (PLA) in door panels, soy-based foams in seat cushions and arm rests, and bio-based epoxy resins in composites. In May, the nova-Institut published an updated market study on bio-based polymers and their worldwide deployment (http://bio-based.eu/markets/#top).
Call for papers still open
At bio!CAR, experts from all segments touching on bio-based materials will present lectures on their latest developments. Among other materials, the portfolio will include conventional plastics filled or reinforced with sophisticated natural-fibre products as well as bio-based, so called “drop-in” bioplastics, such as castor oil-based polyamides or polyolefins from sugar cane-based bioethanol. Novel bioplastics such as PLA or PTT will also be featured, as will duromer resins from renewable resources and bio-based alternatives for rubber and elastomers. The submission deadline for bio!CAR 2015 lectures is 31 May. For additional details, go to www.bio-car.info.
COMPOSITES EUROPE to showcase biocomposites trends
COMPOSITES EUROPE offers the perfect setting for the bio!CAR conference, because the trade fair, held from 22 to 24 September, will cover bio-based composites, as well. At the dedicated “bio-based composites” theme pavilion, the trade fair will demonstrate which products can be realised from natural fibres already today. The spectrum ranges from raw materials to semi-finished goods to finished products for the automotive and aeronautics sectors.
In total, about 450 exhibitors from 30 nations will showcase the performance power of the entire composites industry at COMPOSITES EUROPE. A key focus will be on automation solutions that enable high-volume production processes for manufacturing composites components for automotive engineering, aerospace, boatbuilding as well as the wind energy, construction and other sectors. Some 11,000 lightweight construction decision-makers are expected to attend the 10th COMPOSITES EUROPE, which is organised by trade fair organiser Reed Exhibitions in cooperation with the European industry association EuCIA, the German Federation for Reinforced Plastics AVK, the VDMA Forum Composite Technology and the international trade magazine Reinforced Plastics.
Kicking off COMPOSITES EUROPE 2015 will be the “1st International Composites Congress (ICC)” taking place at the International Congress Center Stuttgart on 21 and 22 September 2015. It will be organised by the trade association Composites Germany.