As with all engineering materials, composites have their benefits and drawbacks, which need to be considered at the early stages of design. Apart from the obvious advantage of weight reduction, another primary reason for using composite materials in cars is that the reinforcement and matrix ratio can be altered to meet certain specifications, which is crucial in complex applications, such as in cars with specific geometries and safety regulations. Carbon fibre provides several structural and weight advantages over traditional automotive components such as steel and aluminium. Some composites also offer improved crash/impact performances compared to traditional steel bodies.
However, carbon composites are prone to degrade and fail when exposed to high temperatures. Zircotec’s proprietary ThermoHold® for Composites Ceramic Coating enables high-strength and lightweight materials to be used in environments for which they would otherwise be unsuitable for. ThermoHold® for Composites are widely used in elite motorsport disciplines such as F1, NASCAR, WEC, DTM and many more.
Our composite coating technology has also been used within high-performance vehicles such as the stunning Aston Martin One-77, whereby our coating safeguarded their rear carbon diffuser from high exhaust temperatures.
Our ThermoHold® technology can offer protection against heat and fire, preventing delamination or the resin melting. As the surfaces of composites can often be vulnerable, our coatings can also act as a protective barrier to prevent wear and abrasion. These coatings are also available in A-class finish.
Depending on different applications, we can also offer both electrically conductive and insulating properties with our various coating solutions. As advocates of low-carbon and sustainable projects, we continue to champion the adoption of composites within the automotive industry, as using composites will improve efficiencies through light-weighting.
If you have any projects involving composite materials that may face high temperatures challenges, feel free to contact us to find out more!