Composites are major materials in the field of energy saving, recycling and environmental preservation. It is expected that the composite market will grow by an annual 15% within the period of 2008-2020. Thanks to their weight reduction, superior specific strength, durability, corrosion resistance and the possibility to be converted into complex shapes, composite polymer materials with long fibre reinforcement are very attractive for applications in automotive (cars, public transportation, space navigation, shipbuilding…), a dynamic industrial sector in Northern France, Wallonia and Flanders.
The search for new high quality materials is increasingly focusing on the development of eco-friendly materials based on natural fibres and polymers from renewable resources.
The industrial valorisation of natural fibres, such as flax, is growing rapidly in the border region of Northern France, Wallonia and Flanders. The region is also very active in the in the industrial production of bio-resins.
In this context, BIOCOMPAL will address the development of composites, made from long fibres (flax and/or long PLA fibres) from renewable and local resources and (nano) reinforced biobased and thermocuring resins (benzoxazine fibres based on naturally available phenols). These composites possess a high mechanical strength and thermal insulation. They are also fire retardant and durable. In this project, several demonstrators will be developed for the transportation sector (e.g. seat, frame part…).
BIOCOMPAL will also introduce companies to the possibilities of these bio-based composites for the larger transportation sector. This will allow the transfer the knowledge, expertise and experience available in the INTERREG FWVL region to the companies that will be able to fully valorise the opportunities.