Project Street Shark awarded JEC Innovation Award in Atlanta
Automotive category goes to FRIMO and partners
08 / 2014 - As the world’s largest organization for the entire composites industry, the JEC Group has been rewarding companies for innovative projects as part of its Innovation Award Program since 1998. FRIMO won the JEC Innovation Award for the second time since 2010; there was a total of four German companies among the ten winners at this year’s JEC Americas. You can view an overview of this year’s awards at:
FRIMO impressed the JEC judging panel with its Street Shark technology demonstrator in the Automotive category. This collaborative project was presented for the first time in 2013 at Composites Europe. FRIMO had set the course for this project more than a year before that.
The Street Shark 1.0 is a modified BMW Z4 with an engine hood and roof module designed as sandwich components with a sharkskin surface. The weight-optimized sandwich design was realized in collaboration with the company 3D|Core GmbH & Co. KG, a partner that also works in the boat building sector. 3D|CORE™ is a structure-strengthening foam core with a honeycomb structure that can be arranged in a three-dimensional layout. Filling the spaces with resin provides significant improvements in the technical properties. The resin used here was a Vitrox® material produced by Huntsman, an advanced PUR matrix system that provides entirely new opportunities – and therefore an RTM process suitable for mass production – thanks to its chemical properties. Bionic surfaces are even a possibility with this process. To make the sharkskin surface, a tool was equipped with a surface geometry molded from a real shark by Eschmann-Textures, another partner in this project. ISL (Berlac Group) was responsible for the paint system. The styling and geometry of the vehicle are influenced by racing, and were developed and designed by Dstyle.
Since then, the Street Shark has gained increasing market interest. Other trials and optimizations followed, e.g. in the wind tunnel. With an enhanced version 2.0, the Street Shark was presented to the VDI’s International Congress “Plastics in Automotive Engineering” in Mannheim in spring, with the example of the Mission 400 Alzen Porsche. It was primarily the sharkskin structure on the engine hood that was optimized in the Street Shark 2.0. It was enlarged again, allowing further improvements to be made, including in the drag coefficient. However, it is not only in the area of vehicle tuning that the project is being met with great interest. Since its initial presentation, numerous new trials and enhancements have been implemented with interested parties from a wide range of industries, e.g. the wind power and sport and leisure industries. Alongside sharkskin, it is possible to produce other bionic surface structures, e.g. dirt-repellent or self-healing surfaces, or any kind of decorative surface, e.g. wood look, which can be used for applications in other industries, such as the leisure and furniture industry. The improvement in the drag coefficient identified in the wind tunnel makes applications for the rail and aviation industry interesting – alongside applications in the automotive sector. Ideas area also being developed for the boat and shipbuilding sector.
The close interweaving of process and material provides completely new ways to economically produce high-quality fiber composite components. Reproducible and high-quality components with functional surfaces can be produced using technically robust and tried-and-tested production concepts in ergonomically and economically sound production facilities. FRIMO would like to thank all of its partners for their excellent contributions to the collaboration.
Contact for further information and documentation
FRIMO Group GmbH
Phone.: +49 (0) 54 04 / 8 86 - 1 57
Fax: +49 (0) 54 04 / 8 86 - 51 57