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Do you know What OAS Did This Summer?

Update on technical developments at OAS during summer 2016

Well, thankfully we didn’t meet anyone wielding a large hook but whilst the weather was merely temperate, there’s been some pretty hot technology passing through the labs here at Oxford Advanced Surfaces. From making our debut on a production car through to a new UV cured surface treatment and improving the performance of composites, OAS has had one packed summer.

We continue to provide our ground-breaking technology into the Formula 1® market, which is where our interest in automotive began back in 2014. We are now widely engaged in the automotive supply chain in the UK and Italy and hope to expand this to Germany, the USA and Asia over the coming years. 38 companies are currently evaluating our products, from niche vehicle manufacturers through to global Tier 1s and OEMs.

After 12 months of work we are delighted that our products have made it through specific customer testing and we are now on two full-scale prototype vehicles with two separate customers; we hope to be featured on a third vehicle by Christmas.

Even more importantly, the first road-going production vehicle featuring Onto™ surface treatments makes its way to market later this year – a great achievement for us!

production carOther industries focused on composites and engineering plastics are now requesting evaluation materials – ranging from aerospace through to sports and leisure. As the need for lighter and higher performing materials increase, so does the need for creative products such as ours to make them easier to process and better in performance.

Technically we have continued to develop our product offering and will soon be launching a new UV curable system for painting and lacquering surface preparation.

Following on from our existing EP1000 range of products we now have a system in final testing that can be UV cured allowing more flexibility in processing as well as broadening the scope of the materials that can be addressed. The product contains all the usual features of our Onto™ system:

  • removes the need for sanding, abrasion and plasma treatments
  • the ability to modify a broad range of substrates with a single product (CFRP (epoxy and phenolic), polyamide)
  • simple wet chemistry sprayable system with no harmful aromatic hydrocarbons
  • works with virtually all epoxy and PU based coatings
  • low environmental impact
  • clean and dust free
  • works with standard spray processes as well as both thermal and UV curing systems

Our UV curable system should be available for evaluation in Q1 2017, so let us know if you want to be one of the first people to get their hands on this revolutionary new product!

We continue to work on our fibre modification and sizing systems.

We can improve the interaction between inert fibres such as polypropylene and UHMWPE and a thermoset matrix to deliver a higher performing composite with additional strength and rigidity. Composite samples are going through testing now, so we hope to be able to get more information out to you soon. In addition, we are working on two Innovate UK supported projects on delivering higher performing recovered / recycled carbon fibre composites, again through fibre sizing technology, as well as working on sizing for thermoplastic composites.

spools

In fact, we believe that over the next 10 years thermoplastic composites will move from being niche materials to the composite materials of choice. Fibre sizing for thermoplastic resins is a significantly under-serviced market and a game-changing opportunity for us.

We were fortunate enough to be assisted in all this activity over the summer by our wonderful French placement student who also played a significant part in OAS winning the Begbroke Sports Day trophy. In fact, during the summer we were finalists in no less than four industry awards – British Engineering Excellence Awards, Automotive Global Awards, Cotswold Life EMI Awards and Cherwell Business Awards. A great result and we are very proud to have been recognised!

So, no summer holiday for us this year, and no winter hibernation planned – we at OAS are just too excited about 2017! 

 

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