TeXtreme® Spread Tow Fabrics has been used by two well-reputed teams competing in the 2011 World Solar Challenge. UM Solar at University of Michigan, USA, and four-time winners Nuon Solar Team at Delft University, Netherlands, have both used TeXtreme® to reduce weight of their solar cars.
The World Solar Challenge takes place every second year where teams from universities and enterprises globally compete with solar-powered cars in a race that covers more than 3000 km through the Australian Outback. The 2011 race will take place between 16-23 October.
Nuon Solar Team will compete with their car Nuna 6, where the predecessors Nuna 1-4 won the competition four times consecutively between 2001 and 2007. The total weight without driver of Nuna 6 is 145 kg. The body is built using a sandwich construction reinforced with mostly TeXtreme® Spread Tow carbon fabrics.
Luuk Akkerman, Head of Production Nuna 6 at Nuon Solar Team, says: "TeXtreme®'s Spread Tow fibers make big differences especially in light-weight projects like solar cars, where great stiffness as well as low weight is required"
UM Solar will compete with their car Quantum that is significantly lighter than their previous car Infinium. The entire unibody chassis of Quantum weighs 19kg, which is over 50% lighter than the previous car. UM Solar has primarily used a 100gsm variant of TeXtreme® Spread Tow Fabric and has also used a 76gsm variant of TeXtreme® Spread Tow Fabric prepreg to reinforce certain parts on the car.
"We were able to shave 200 pounds from our 2009 car, Infinium, to the new car, Quantum, and the TeXtreme® weave we used is a key part of this change”, says Blaine Riley, Head of Sourcing at UM Solar car.
TeXtreme® Spread Tow Fabrics enables composite parts to weigh 20% less without sacrificing on mechanical performance. The flexibility in tailoring TeXtreme® to meet the specific needs of applications renders it an optimized reinforcement solution.