Boeing and BMW Team Up on Carbon Fiber Recycling
Boeing and the BMW Group have signed a collaboration agreement to carry out joint research on carbon fiber recycling and share knowledge about carbon fiber materials and manufacturing. Carbon fiber is an extremely resilient and light fiber-reinforced polymer. It can be used to make products in several industries, including civil and aerospace engineering, automotive and sports goods, among others.
Both Boeing and BMW have been pioneering the use of carbon fiber in their products. Boeing's 787 Dreamliner is made up of 50 percent carbon fiber material and BMW will introduce two vehicles with passenger compartments made of carbon fiber in 2013. These are the i3 and i8 models and they will be assembled in Leipzig, Germany, while the carbon fiber parts will be manufactured at BMW’s plant in Moses Lake, Washington, which opened in 2011.
The collaboration agreement between both companies will also see them sharing carbon fiber manufacturing process simulations and ideas for manufacturing automation. This is the first time the companies have entered this type of agreement.
"Boeing has many years of extensive experience using carbon fiber in the field of aviation, while the BMW Group has earned a significant competitive advantage through its use of special manufacturing methods for series production of carbon fiber parts. Through this cooperation, we can merge know-how between our industries in the field of sustainable production solutions,” said BMW AG for Development Board Member Herbert Diess.
Image credit: BMW