Thermoplastic fibres are man-made fibres, created by extruding polymer materials through spinnerets, forming a filament. Melt spinning is the most commonly used process. Centexbel-VKC focuses its research and development in this field mainly on:
- renewable, bio-based, sustainable alternatives for oil-based thermoplastics
- improvement of their properties to match and even surpass the ones of conventional materials
- functionalisation of thermoplastic fibres (chemical, physical, nano-technology)
- creation of bio-based prepregs and high-end fibre-reinforced or self-reinforced composites to meet to the most severe mechanical requirements
- implementation of new technologies (e.g. Additive Manufacturing) in conventional processes
- recycling and closed-loop approach
Centexbel-VKC has created a vast textile extrusion platform and a 3D printing platform, both located in Kortrijk, that are also accessible to the industry for experiments and prototyping.