A new generation of carbon-fiber-reinforced polyamide compounds has been introduced as a structural metal replacement material by Lehvoss North America (Pawcatuck, CT), a subsidiary of Lehmann & Voss (Hamburg, Germany).
The Luvocom SCF product line was developed in response to market demand for lighter and stronger materials that offer improved performance and overall cost reductions, according to John Vermeulen, Business Development Manager. "Increases in strength and stiffness often compromise toughness," he says. "Our new carbon-fiber technology pushes the performance boundaries of traditional injection molding engineering compounds even higher, thereby offering new design possibilities for lighter, stronger components."
Luvocom SCF has approximately 50% greater tensile strength, 15% more stiffness, and 90% better impact resistance than traditional carbon-fiber-reinforced polymers, according to the company. The mechanical properties are vastly improved because of the material's low specific gravity. "It is lighter than metal- or glass-reinforced polymers," says Vermeulen. "Plus, it has good tribological properties, is electrically conductive, and has low coefficient of thermal expansion."