Astris Carbon on new developments in PAN precursor production & more

Ahead of his presentation at next month's GOCarbonFibre 2017 we spoke to Franco Francalanci, Managing Director of Astris Carbon, about new developments in PAN precursor production, why it is important to review the precursor production cycle and much more.

Q1. Your presentation will be offering proposals for new developments in carbon fibre precursor production; can your briefly explain what it will be covering?

It is quite well accepted among the technical people involved in CF business that a good precursor is the most important component of the production cycle, both in terms of know-how and cost. In spite of that, relatively little attention is paid to this topic at conferences and exhibitions. The content of this presentation will therefore initially focus on a short description of the existing processes for PAN precursor production and their comparison. Then a few proposals for a new industrial process which exploits the main features of the existing ones will be presented.

Q2. Why is it important to review the precursor production cycle?

Notwithstanding much research efforts directed to develop new routes to CF manufacturing, we believe that in the near future using PAN precursor will remain by far the most important approach. Therefore any improvement to the PAN precursor production technology will contribute to make the overall CF manufacturing process cheaper and more efficient, so helping CF penetration in the different industrial sectors.

Q3. What are you most looking forward to by speaking and attending GOCarbonFibre 2017 conference in Munich?

Astris has started its activity of technology transfer and provider of know-how for PAN precursor production five years ago, mainly using the basic technologies inherited from its predecessors: Montefibre and SNIA Fibre. Meanwhile we have started our own R&D activity trying to extend the existing technologies and to make a step forward. Today we want to share this experience with the GOCarbonFibre community wishing to find some interested player willing to collaborate with us in a new precursor or carbon fibre project.

Franco will be presenting as part of the Emerging Technologies and New Developments session at the conference next month. Other presenters in the session include Harper International, Michelman and SGL Group.

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