A plug-in hybrid electric vehicle weighing just 500 kg thanks to an all-carbon structure has come out tops in the automotive category of the JEC Innovation Awards Program recognizing excellence in composite design and application.
Specialist vehicle manufacturer Axon Automotive (Northamptonshire, UK) led the project with partners Toray Industries (Tokyo, Japan, carbon fiber); Eurocarbon (Sittard, the Netherlands, braiding); Scott Bader (Northamptonshire UK, a new resin formulation) and Eccles Tooling Systems (West Midlands, UK, patterns).
The compact Axon car has also been designed for scalable production and is suitable for new fuel vehicles and prestige vehicles. The material innovation consists of using a braid over a foam preform, thus effectively creating a 3D woven structure from multiple preforms that are machine-laid and infusion-molded into beams. These beams have an internal structure that can resist buckling and deformation....