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Bio-based recyclable, reshapable and repairable (3R) fibre-reinforced EpOXY composites for automotive and construction sectors. 


Program: H2020-BBI 

Duration: June 2017 to November 2020. 42 months

Coordinator: Aratz Genua, Cidetec

More information: Pere Castell

Fibre reinforced thermoset composites (FRTCs) are attractive materials for high demanding sectors, such as automotive or construction, due to their lightweight and excellent mechanical properties. However, the lack of reprocessability and difficulty for repairing and recycling significantly increases the overall material cost and causes grave environmental concerns.

Additionally, the vast majority of polymer matrices and fibres used in their manufacturing are non-renewable fossil-derived materials or require high amounts of energy for their production.

Fibre reinforced thermoset composites (FRTCs)
Fibre reinforced thermoset composites (FRTCs)

Aiming at addressing those limitations by involving the European bio-based industry, ECOXY will develop innovative biobased epoxy resins and fibre reinforcements to produce new sustainable and techno-economically competitive FRTCs by targeting advanced functionalities: reparability, reprocessability and recyclability (3R). 

The 3R functionalities will be achieved by using new resin formulations replacing commonly used curing agents by dynamic hardeners, which under certain operational makes possible to: 

  1. Repair fibre/matrix delamination and matrix micro-cracks.
  2. Reprocess cured laminates could be reprocessed to create new 3D parts impossible with traditional FRTCs).
  3. Mechanical and chemical recycling.

Thus, ECOXY will develop: 

  1. Tailor-made bio-based epoxy monomers (including biorefinery products).
  2. Upgraded and functional bio-based fibres (natural and PLA).
  3. Specific formulations for FRTCs manufacturing processes (RTM, wet compression moulding and pultrusion).
  4. Additional functionalities such as flame-retardancy for 3R resin and self healing for fibres.

The selected prototypes will be validated for automotive and construction sectors using relevant standards and applicable certifications. Besides, an environmental (LCA) and socio-economic assessment of the results will be carried out.

This project has received funding from the Bio Based Industries Joint Undertaking under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 744311

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