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Materials

Aerospace growth leads to composites alliances

by Jean-François Tremblay
April 2, 2018 | APPEARED IN VOLUME 96, ISSUE 14

Hexcel and Arkema will collaborate in the development of composite tapes, while Toray Industries has agreed to buy a Dutch manufacturer of carbon fiber preimpregnated with adhesive, known as prepreg. Both moves are aimed at increasing the chemical firms’ positioning in the aircraft materials market. At an R&D facility planned for France, the Hexcel-Arkema alliance will harness Hexcel’s composites expertise to develop carbon-fiber-based tapes that incorporate Arkema’s polyetherketoneketone polymers. Meanwhile, Toray is paying $1.15 billion for TenCate Advanced Composites, a company that specializes in carbon fiber prepreg for the production of small and medium aircraft. Toray, the world’s largest carbon fiber producer, already supplies the material to the large aircraft makers Boeing and Airbus. The TenCate acquisition will expand Toray’s client base and product development capabilities, the Japanese firm says.

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