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Photos: Kompetenzzentrum Holz GmbH
Exhibit: NFC & WPC
Natural fiber reinforced plastics (NFC, Natural Fiber Composites) and a sub-group, the wood-polymer composites (WPC, Wood Polymer Composites) are versatile, innovative and bio-based materials. These materials can be processed by extrusion (co-extrusion, foaming), filament, injection moulding (foaming, 2K, BIM), compression moulding and 3D-FLM printing (Fused Layer Modelling).
NFC contain biogenic fillers (e.g. wood, pulp, hemp, sisal, cellulose, cork, etc.) in a matrix of (bio-)polymers. Due to the achievable lower densities and by foaming (extrusion or injection moulding) lightweight components with convincing properties and homogeneous foam structure can be generated. By the use of bio-based polymers 100 % bio-based products can be produced, which are biodegradable depending on the applied biopolymer. During manufacturing shorter cycle times, reduced processing temperatures and lower energy consumption are additional advantages of this novel class of materials.
Applications of NFC/WPC are currently mainly decking and flooring. New developments try to open other fields of application such as automotive interior design, furniture, office supplies, housings, pencils and filaments for 3D-printing.
In addition, these materials can be transformed into high-performance ceramics, which withstand extreme temperatures (over 1,000 °C) and which are stable in aggressive chemical environments
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