Fraunhofer-Center HTL in its Application center Textile Fiber Ceramics uses modern processing techniques for inorganic fibers, develops them and produces semi-finished textile products.
The Application Center Textile Fiber Ceramics TFK in Münchberg has developed from a cooperation between the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and the Hof University. The TFK uses the skills ad equipment existing at the Hof University in the field of textile fiber processing, finishing and testing. It transfers textile application techniques such as weaving, braiding, knitting or nonwoven production to ceramic fibers. At Fraunhofer-Center HTL, by this cooperation in the area of textile technique, a gap in the development of ceramic fiber composite materials from the fiber to its prosessing up to CMC is closed. For upper Franconian as well as general central European companies, an address for textile-related issues with inorganic fibers has been established at the Application Center Textile Fiber Ceramics (TFK) in Münchberg.
The TFK is working on the development of cost-effective procedures suitable for serial production by which inorganic fibers can be processed to load-conforming 2D and 3D structures. By that, structures can be developed for new lightweight applications, for example, in the aerospace industry, in heat treatment and in the automotive industry. Silicon carbide, mullite, basalt, carbon or glass fibers are typically used. Here, tailor-made structures for focussed weight reduction are implemented and resource-saving and efficiency-increasing solutions are made possible. The manfactured fiber structures have a high damage and temperature resistance.
In the field of weaving, a double rapier weaving machine with single-thread operation offers new options for the manufacture of fabrics. Textile processing of inorganic fibers into 3D structures is being researched and developed on this weaving machine. Spreading processes are being developed for the particularly low-stress processing of sensitive fiber rovings, which are used to produce tapes for the production of fabrics. In addition, TFK has many other state-of-the-art textile processes at its disposal in technical center areas totalling 5500 m².
Test procedures for the evaluation of the fibers and semi-finished textile products are developed at the TFK as well (see Fiber testing). Processing properties and fiber surfaces can be modified on demand (see Ceramic fibers). The semi-finished textile products can be further processed to CMC components.