Haydale has announced that it has been awarded a research and development grant from the Niche Vehicle Network to develop graphene-enhanced composite tooling and graphene-enhanced automotive body panels. Haydale is looking to reduce cycle times compared to existing tooling methods, as well as reduce weight and increase performance of component material.

A grant of £249,600, of which Haydale will receive £120,000, has been awarded to the consortium that Haydale leads, joined by Briggs Automotive Company (BAC) and Pentaxia. BAC is a British manufacturer of the Mono, the world's only road-legal, single seat super car. Pentaxia is a specialist in tooling design, machining (jigs & fixtures), and composite production.

Keith Broadbent, COO at Haydale, commented: "This funding will build on the significant developments already made by Haydale in advanced prepreg materials. The novel prepreg will be of significant interest to niche vehicle manufacturers and the premium and luxury automotive sectors, with BAC as a ready-made customer."

Ray Gibbs, President, Business Development at Haydale, commented: "This collaboration will ensure major advancements in composite tooling resulting in a prepreg material that is ready for market launch. We know that production throughput is a major issue in the Carbon Fiber composite market and this initiative can ease the bottleneck. We will look to work with licensees to develop a route for full rate production and commercialization."

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