Polymer Engineering

Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology

Thermoset processing

Direct sheet molding compound (D-SMC)

This innovative one-step process eliminates the need for a maturation period, and consequently reduces the processing time from the raw material to the finished product from several days to a matter of minutes.

Process description

The direct sheet molding compounding process (D-SMC) was developed in order to further improve efficiency and quality assurance in processing. In this manufacturing process, the SMC compound is manufactured in a production line developed in house, and then hot-pressed, without the maturation time needed in conventional SMC processing. This renders the manufacturing process more consistent, producing semi-finished products with reliable properties.

As a result of the elimination of this intermediate step, each individual component making up the material, including the fillers and reinforcing fibers, can be varied during the ongoing process, allowing maximum flexibility during component manufacture. Short processing times of 20-30 minutes from the processing of the raw materials to the removal of the component from the mold increase the cost-efficiency of the process.

Facilities and equipment

  • Laboratory units for production of SMC formulations
  • Processing unit for the production of direct-SMC (D-SMC)
  • Impregnation unit for pre-treatment of reinforcing fibers
  • Cutting technologies for different types of fiber
  • Laboratory for testing mechanical, visual and rheological properties as well as reactivity
  • Hydraulic high-speed press with a maximum press force of 6300 kN
  • Molds for manufacturing two and three dimensional demonstrator components
  • Realization and evaluation of class A surfaces

Our offer

We offer our customers services ranging from basic investigations and feasibility studies through to the optimization and processing of components.

  • Feasibility studies
  • Benchmark testing
  • Support in material development
  • Process development
  • Consultancy services concerning process and component design
  • Production of prototypes
  • Patent research
  • Workshops

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