July 18, 2008
Composites and Technical Fabrics: The Potential for Flax and Hemp
Research and Markets (http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/939b46/composites_and_tec) has announced the addition of the "Composites and Technical Fabrics: The Potential for Flax and Hemp" report to their offering.
Composite materials are found in many everyday products, ranging from aircraft, cars and boats to skis and golf clubs. They consist of a tough fibrous material which is bound with a resin. The result is a structure which is light in weight and strong. Many critical industrial, aerospace and military applications make use of composites because of their durability and their resistance to severe environmental conditions at a reasonable cost.
A high percentage of composites are based on glass fibre, combined with polyester, vinyl ester or epoxy resins. However, the use of natural fibres such as hemp and flax in composites has been growing. Such materials are already being employed as components for the automotive and building industries. Although the amounts involved are small, it is thought that there could be much wider potential for flax and hemp in these applications.
The use of flax and hemp can result in a number of benefits. The fibres are seen as being "green" in the sense that they constitute a renewable resource and the processing of the fibres is environmentally friendly. Also, the cultivation of flax and hemp is heavily subsidised by the EU. The main drawback of using flax and hemp is that their performance characteristics tend to be inferior to those of the more commonly used synthetic fibres. Consequently, flax and hemp can only be used in a limited range of technical textile applications.
However, extensive research and development (R&D) is being undertaken in some European countries, particularly France, in a bid to widen the market and find profitable end uses for these materials.
Key Topics Covered:
APPLICATIONS AND PROPERTIES OF FLAX AND HEMP IN TECHNICAL TEXTILES
ENVIRONMENTAL BENEFITS OF USING FLAX AND HEMP IN COMPOSITES AND TECHNICAL FABRICS
MARKETS FOR COMPOSITES
Market for composites by end use sector
Structure of the composites industry
RECENT DEVELOPMENTS IN THE SUPPLY OF FIBRES FOR USE IN COMPOSITES
FLAX AND HEMP-BASED COMPOSITES IN THE AUTOMOTIVE INDUSTRY
List of tables
Table 1: Mechanical characteristics of flax, hemp and competing fibres
Table 2: Structure of final processing in the global composites industry, by volume, 2008
Table 3: Global market for composites by end use sector, 1999-2005
- AFT Plasturgie
For more information visit http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/939b46/composites_and_tec