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Hexcel joins ASCEND Project

Project aims to develop technologies and automation equipment to enable more more fuel-efficient structures.

29th March 2021

Innovation in Textiles
 |  United Kingdom


Hexcel is participating in the recently launched UK-based project called ASCEND – Aerospace and Automotive Supply Chain Enabled Development – that will focus on developing high-rate manufacturing and processing technologies to accelerate the development of new, lightweight advanced composite materials.

Hexcel will join lead partner GKN Aerospace and 13 other project stakeholders in a collaboration across the UK supply chain to develop the technologies and automation equipment required to manufacture lightweight, more fuel-efficient structures for sustainable air mobility, aerospace, and automotive industries.

The company is developing a new HexPly fast cure prepreg system that will significantly reduce component processing times compared to existing aerospace prepregs. In addition, its range of liquid composite moulding (LCM) products will be incorporated into the ASCEND project work packages and both HiTape advanced unidirectional dry carbon reinforcements and HiMax multiaxial non-crimp fabrics reinforcements will also be used.

The technical integration enabled by the ASCEND project partnerships will ensure a complete understanding of customer performance and processing needs, coupled with the opportunity to industrialise new technologies utilising the extensive capabilities of GKN’s Global Technology Centre in Bristol.

“We look forward to working with other leading companies as we develop processes and materials that help to make the next generation of sustainable air mobility, aerospace, and automotive vehicles possible,” said Paul Mackenzie, senior vice president and CTO at Hexcel. “This project offers the perfect platform for Hexcel to collaborate and further develop our HexPly, HiMax, and HiTape technologies.”

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