Yokohama, Japan – March 17, 2015 – Automotive designers can work with BASF to develop innovative lightweight solutions faster and more efficiently with the launch of the Asia Composite Center in Yokohama, Japan. The Asia Composite Center, which houses manufacturing cell for part processing, including a versatile mold frame, machine, IR heater and robot, is able to demonstrate mass production of composite parts for automotive applications. As such, key customers in Asia can benefit from accelerated development speed, molding trials of prototypes and validated solutions on a semi-industrial scale. The new center will open in April 2015.
“Over the past 20 years, BASF has contributed significantly to metal replacement in automotive applications, using short fiber reinforced polyamide. Last year, we broadened our product portfolio with Ultracom™ to enable further metal replacement. The opening of the Asia Composite Center allows us to help customers achieve early optimization in the product development process,” said Mr. Andy Postlethwaite, Senior Vice President, Performance Materials Asia Pacific, BASF.
The robust processing technologies in the Asia Composite Center – located at BASF’s Yokohama Innovation Center in Japan – is part of the unique service system offered under the brand name Ultracom™, BASF’s system of continuous fiber reinforced materials and relevant services for the reinforcement of injection-molded structures. It is based on three elements: continuous-fiber reinforced semi-finished products, adapted overmolding compounds and the complementing engineering support. With the launch of the Asia Composite Center, BASF is the first raw material supplier in Asia to provide a service system for continuous fiber reinforced components that includes molding trials of prototypes.
Asia Composite Center proves the potential of Ultracom™
As the Asia Composite Center demonstrates innovative, reliable and efficient processing, it proves the potential of Ultracom™.
Ultracom™ offers short cycle times due to the thermoplastic manufacturing approach. This can be accomplished for instance, by combining draping and over-molding in one step using continuous fiber-reinforced thermoplastic composites with optimized part design.
Additionally, with the Asia Composite Center, Ultracom™ is ready for production on a semi-industrial scale in Asia. Hence this demonstrates reliable manufacturing capabilities.
“The Asia Composite Center, coupled with our broad portfolio of high performance plastics, successful customer collaborations, strong pipeline of projects and technical capabilities, allows us to better serve the growing automotive market in Asia Pacific and enable our customers to capture growth in the region. Our researchers are also working on adapting the technology to other industries such as consumer electronics,” added Mr. Postlethwaite.
About BASF’s Performance Materials Division
BASF’s Performance Materials division encompasses the entire materials know-how of BASF regarding innovative, customized plastics under one roof. Globally active in four major industry sectors - transportation, construction, industrial applications and consumer goods – the division has a strong portfolio of products and services combined with a deep understanding of application-oriented system solutions. Key drivers of profitability and growth are our close collaboration with customers and a clear focus on solutions. Strong capabilities in R&D provide the basis to develop innovative products and applications. In 2014, the Performance Materials division achieved global sales of € 6.5 bn.
More information online: www.performance-materials.basf.com
At BASF, we create chemistry – and have been doing so for 150 years. Our portfolio ranges from chemicals, plastics, performance products and crop protection products to oil and gas. As the world’s leading chemical company, we combine economic success with environmental protection and social responsibility. Through science and innovation, we enable our customers in nearly every industry to meet the current and future needs of society. Our products and solutions contribute to conserving resources, ensuring nutrition and improving quality of life. We have summed up this contribution in our corporate purpose: We create chemistry for a sustainable future. BASF had sales of over €74 billion in 2014 and around 113,000 employees as of the end of the year. BASF shares are traded on the stock exchanges in Frankfurt (BAS), London (BFA) and Zurich (AN). Further information on BASF is available on the Internet at www.basf.com.