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If you’re looking to outsource a job on a large infrastructure – such as a bridge or building, your SSD contractor may recommend using carbon fibre reinforced polymer. In this article, we explain what carbon fibre reinforced polymer materials are, and how they’re made – so you can make an educated decision on whether you want to go ahead and book the job.

What are carbon fibre reinforced polymer materials?

Carbon fibre reinforced polymer, or CFRP, are composite materials which are manufactured and sold in three different forms – bars, strips, and sheets. Though they’re essentially the same material with similar qualities, each type of carbon fibre reinforced polymer is used to achieve a slightly different result. The type your contractor uses might depend on personal preference, what they have access to, whichever’s more affordable, or another reason. It’s always best to ask them if you’re curious about your type of carbon fibre reinforced polymer – any professional will be happy to help!

What are the qualities of carbon fibre reinforced polymer materials?

The name of the composite materials we are talking about here – carbon fibre reinforced polymer – says a lot about the properties they possess. Carbon fibre reinforced polymer materials are commonly used to add strength and reinforcement to infrastructures like bridges and large buildings. In fact, carbon fibre is five times as strong as steel, and twice as stiff. Carbon fibre reinforced polymer is the favourite composite for many specialists. Here are a few of their top qualities:

  • Strength;
  • Light-weight;
  • Corrosion protection;
  • Vibrations blocker;
  • Anti-fatigue;
  • Minimal thermal conductor;
  • Minimal electrical conductor.

How is carbon fibre reinforced polymer made?

As previously mentioned, carbon fibre reinforced polymer materials are manufactured in three ways – bars, strips, and sheets. Your SSD contractor will likely visit you to complete a survey before deciding which breed of carbon fibre reinforced polymer your job needs (if any). It’s created by using the following manufacturing processes:

  1. The filament winding process, where composites are put under tension over a rotating mandrel;
  2. The pultrusion process, which uses high heat;
  3. The hand lay-up process, which uses moulding and wet resin.

Interested in finding out more?

…please get in touch with a member of our friendly team today. If you’re one step ahead and you’re looking for quotes, we can assist you there too. Looking forward to speaking to you!