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New 3M lightweight resin has marine applications

3M introduced its matrix resins for the filament winding of carbon fiber composites, a new generation of filament winding resin systems that it says has specific benefits to marine applications.

"These new matrix resins will help industries redefine how long pressure vessels last, how light they are and how they are designed," 3M engineered products and solutions general manager Vic Genco said in a statement.

"The technology has applications for companies in a multitude of industries, including aerospace, manufacturing, transportation, fleet and more," he added. "3M's new system can help reduce material usage, improve strength and allow a longer life for products."

As the resin in a fiber-reinforced pressure vessel, the new product has demonstrated improvements. In third-party testing performed by HyPerComp Engineering, pressure vessels made with 3M matrix resin were compared with pressure vessels made with traditional Bis-A epoxy. The 3M vessels provided more than a 6 percent increase in fiber-delivered strength, a 30 percent increase in burst pressure after impact and a 55 percent average increase in fatigue life, according to 3M.

In addition to lighter weights and improved strength and longevity, 3M matrix resin for filament winding also has improved scuff resistance and as much as a 36 percent reduced exotherm, enabling the possibility of curing thicker parts, the company said.

The new product could deliver benefits for manufacturing rollers, drive shafts, rocket motor casings, launch tubes, deepwater oil and gas umbilicals, boat masts, aircraft structural tubes and struts and more.

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