SAERfoam® – an innovative replacement for balsa wood
Sturdier than PVC – lighter than balsa. SAERTEX®, with its hybrid core material SAERfoam®, offers a product that significantly improves efficiency during the manufacture of components, while simultaneously offering freely definable material characteristics.
SAERfoam® is a structural core material with 3D glass bridges. It combines ultralight foam (PU/PE/PIR) with 3D glass reinforcements which are integrated into the foam core and has been designed for use with infusion processes (vacuum infusion, RTM, low pressure compression moulding). This saves time and directly reduces costs. SAERfoam® sandwich structures can also be optimised to match individual customer requirements. For example, its isotropic and compressive strength characteristics, its directional bending and shear stresses, and its bending stresses in multiple directions and thrust loads can all be customised. This is achieved by controlling the angular orientation of the glass fibre bridges and using different outer layers for the sandwich structures.
SAERTEX®, the market leader in the production of technical fabrics made of glass, carbon and aramid fibres, has been supporting its customers with its engineering know how and special products for many years in order to improve its customers’ productivity and efficiency. This tradition continues with SAERfoam®: “Three primary factors are important to our customers in the selection of the appropriate composite core material”, explains SAERTEX Product Manager, Nicolas Vernin. “Weight, mechanical characteristic values and, of course, cost. With SAERfoam®, these three factors can be individually defined, thereby opening up completely new perspectives for our customers in terms of efficiency.”
SAERTEX® has identified a huge potential for SAERfoam® in the wind power industry in particular. “The rotor blades of wind turbine generators are continuously increasing in length”, explains Marc Schrief, Sales & Marketing Director at SAERTEX®. “Replacing balsa wood with SAERfoam® delivers weight savings of up to 25 percent. This means that manufacturing rotor blades in lengths of 100 metres and more, as expected in future, will be more efficient.”
There are many further arguments in favour of replacing traditional balsa wood material with the innovative SAERfoam® core material: SAERfoam® is resistant to humidity, offers grid patterns for simple draping and – on request – can be supplied with pre-cut contours or as pre-assembled kits. SAERfoam® can also be supplied as a sandwich system with multiaxial interlaid complexes and a LEO fire-resistant layer. SAERfoam® is compatible with all resins made by leading manufacturers and it has been verified in practice and laboratory testing to saturate rapidly. The product has been newly certified by Germanischer Lloyd (GL) and Bureau Veritas (BV). This provides confirmation that in contrast to the natural material, balsa wood, SAERfoam® can be produced in large quantities at a consistently high standard of quality.
Further information: www.saertex.com/saerfoam