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COMPOSITES EUROPE 2017 - A smashing international success

Rising significance of multi-material solutions

The benefits of fibre composites are most impactful in multi-material lightweight construction. That’s because it is now clear that the demands of modern lightweight construction can no longer be met by a single material; finding the best solutions instead requires hybrid lightweight construction. Serving as the interface between metal and fibre composite technologies at COMPOSITES EUROPE is the Lightweight Technologies Forum, which made its debut back in 2016. “With this cross-material forum, we created a new format in order to bring together the composites industry and the application industries in integrated and hybrid lightweight construction”, says Olaf Freier, the event director of COMPOSITES EUROPE.

Innovations are more important than ever these days, especially in integrated lightweight automotive engineering. The current market study titled “Lightweight Construction as Innovation Driver” illustrates that point. Unveiled in Stuttgart, the paper lays out the status quo and explores the trends and future challenges of multi-material lightweight construction in the automotive sector. It concludes that politics and end customers are the biggest drivers of lightweight construction right now. However, the consistent implementation of lightweight construction solutions fails due to supplier- and manufacturer-imposed hurdles, according to the study, which was designed and implemented in cooperation with Automotive Management Consulting GmbH (AMC).

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"Lightweight construction is particularly important for the international competitiveness of German industry and thus for ‘Made in Germany’, and lightweight construction as a key innovative technology strengthens our leading international position”, says Dr. Elmar Witten, the managing director of the AVK and the industry association Composites Germany, and one of the initiators of the position paper “Germany must become the leading lightweight construction supplier”. A total of 16 industrial and lightweight construction associations signed the position paper a few weeks ago.

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Source: COMPOSITES EUROPE
(Photo: COMPOSITES EUROPE)