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NMB - Neue Materialien Bayreuth, Germany

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Profile: NMB GmbH is an independent research institution established by the Free State of Bavaria in 2000 with the aim to provide a platform for industrially relevant R&D and to strengthen collaborations between University and Industry. NMB GmbH is an affiliated entity to the beneficiary University Bayreuth; because both are under direct control of the Free State of Bavaria. University Bayreuth is a State University of the Free State of Bavaria and is receiving its basic funding from the State of Bavaria, while 64% of shares in NMB GmbH belong to the State of Bavaria as majority share-holder (55%) together with the University of Bayreuth (9%). Other minority share-holders besides University Bayreuth are the City of Bayreuth and the Chambers of Commerce of Upper Franconia and Coburg and individuals which keep 5% of shares. A legal document showing this relation has been provided to the Commission. Based on special clause 10, NMB GmbH will carry out part of work assigned to the beneficiary University of Bayreuth.

NMB GmbH is focused on the development of capable processing technology for light-weight materials based on cellular and/ or fibre-reinforced polymers. NMB has specialized knowledge in a wide range of processing techniques from former research projects in the field of development of cellular polymers as well as in the field of short, long and endless fibre reinforced thermoplastics. In both fields, state of the art processing equipment for diverse foam processing technologies, like e.g., moulding, extrusion, bead foams is readily available. In addition, equipment and expertise required for testing of light-weight composite material is available.

Expertise: NMB will carry out part of the research work for the beneficiary University of Bayreuth in WP 3 and WP 4 and will focus on the window frame, not the sheet glass. NMB GmbH is specialized in processing of polymer foams and fibre reinforced laminate and sandwich structures with thermoplastic foam sandwiched between endless-fibre reinforced polymer foils. Currently NMB is involved in projects to fabricate hybrid parts processed by a combined Pressing-Injection Moulding process. Here a 3-D object consisting endless-fibre reinforced thermoplastic tape is heated and in-situ consolidated in a vertical injection moulding machine. After consolidation, short fibre reinforced thermoplastic polymer are joined together with the tape to form ribs, frames or mounting elements. Such equipment as well as down-sized equipment will be made available for processing of HarWin window frame segments and for the demonstrator.

Moreover, NMB is working on the development of sandwich constructions made of all thermoplastic polymers, e.g. a thermoplastic foam core combined with fibre reinforced thermoplastic skin-layers. In this case, the skin layers may consist of UD-films, woven or non- crimp fabrics or discrete cut short fibres. One major challenge of the part of research to be carried is the joining of skin layers with a foam core. Ideally, such joining shall be done without additional thermoplastic materials, which means thermal processing, where the resin of the skin layer has to be molten during joining, to achieve a matrix flow into the foam structure to get good adhesion quality to the polymer foam, whereby the foam core has to withstand a significant heat transfer without compromising its structure. NMB will also carry out part of the testing work for the beneficiary University of Bayreuth, e.g., interlaminar shear strength, compression after impact, peel-tests or 4-point bending in dynamic mode for fatigue evaluation.

Key Personnel:

Dipl.-Ing. Mathias Muehlbacher graduated from Friedrich-Alexander University Erlangen-Nuremberg in 2010 with a diploma degree in mechanical engineering with a concentration on plastics technology and design. Mr. Muehlbacher is a researcher in developing processing technologies for parts of endless-fibre thermoplastic composites. Heating, joining, moulding, hybridisation and a wide range characterization methods are within his focus.

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