A hugely durable reinforced plastic composite that weighs less than aluminium but has up to 10 times the specific strength of 1020 steel is being offered by Cut To Size Plastics for demanding rail and associated electrical and materials handling applications.
Wearply reinforced plastic composite is ideal for maintenance, engineering and fabrication tasks during the Christmas-New Year Maintenance Season which aim to optimize design and performance of machinery and plant components and leaf spring assemblies in which performance and reliability is vital.
Wearply can withstand millions of stress cycles at 1400 bar (20,000 psi) without fatigue failure, says Laurie Green, Managing Director of Cut To Size Plastics. Wearply derives its enormous strength, performance and durability from epoxy resins reinforced with continuously aligned, non-woven filaments. This allows plies to be laid so reinforcement is oriented to give greater strength and stiffness in the direction, or directions, in which it is most needed. Parallel filaments resist the stress abrasion that can shorten the fatigue life in conventional reinforced plastics.
Material advantages of Wearply include:
- High strength-to-weight performance, including 50 per cent greater compression strength than 1020 steel and a strength-to-weigh ratio up to 75x 106 mm. Aluminium is 45 per cent heavier
- Chemical and corrosion resistance – demonstrated in a wide range of vibratory conveyors, feeders and screening equipment working in aggressive environments, including rail loading facilities.
- Improved electrical resistance – for performance as an electrical insulator in areas such as rail jointing, where it is used in standard, heavy duty and adhesive types, and as a structural high temperature composite in generators and transformers
- Damped vibration, noise and shock, qualities
- High impact strength and low notch sensitivity
- High resistance to fatigue, which, combined with other properties such as high dynamic strength, makes the material very suitable for helper, guide and drive springs in swing and screen technology
- Longer service life, which, in the case of linear and circular conveyors with magnetic drive, provides longer service life that results in higher outputs for food production, for example
- High temperature stability – dry service temperature up to 177 C (350F)
- High elastic storing capacity combined with high mechanical strength, to provide higher resiliency as compared with normal steel leaf springs, higher internal damping, well balanced resilience behaviours and six-fold storage capacity as to elastic energy compared with steel springs. Also used in shock and strut structures