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Free Form Fibers announces successful “laser printing” of pure boron fibers

Free Form Fibers announced today the successful production of pure boron fibers from its Fiber Laser Printer™. This laser-driven system extracts inorganic fiber from special gases using a parallel array of laser beams, producing fibers of incomparable purity and performance. “This is a first for the high performance fibers market” commented John Schneiter, Free Form Fibers CEO. “It has been known for some time that boron outperforms carbon on a strength-to-weight ratio basis, but until now it has been impossible to actually manufacture a small diameter, pure boron fiber that can be used as a replacement for carbon.” Boron fiber has over twice the strength-to-weight ratio as carbon, which means that over half the weight of today’s composites can be removed by replacing carbon fiber with boron. This will prove vitally important in weight-sensitive applications such as aerospace and high performance sporting goods. “We firmly believe that, in the materials world, boron is to carbon what carbon was to aluminum a generation ago,” Schneiter explained.

 

2016 Academy of Distinguished Engineers Inductees

Dr. John Schneiter, CEO of Free Form Fibers, was inducted into the Academy of Distinguished Engineers at the University of Connecticut at a ceremony in Storrs, CT on April 28, 2016. The Academy, founded in 2003, “honors School of Engineering alumni or friends whose careers are characterized by their sustained and exemplary contributions to the engineering profession through research, practice, education, policy or service. Members are individuals who bring enduring honor to the community as practitioners and as citizens.” Dr. Schneiter earned his BS in Mechanical Engineering at UCONN and his Masters and PhD in Mechanical Engineering (minor in EE) at MIT.

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Machine Design

“Innovations Moving Structural Ceramics into the Mainstream” discusses the advances in Ceramic Matrix Composites in various high performance applications, and the role of extreme performance fibers such as Silicon Carbide in next-gen applications.

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Lux Research publishes report on Free Form Fibers

New Wave of Start-ups Tackling Challenges in Advanced Structural Ceramics

The report, titled “Assessing Challenges, Opportunities, and Innovators in Advanced Structural Ceramics,” is part of the Lux Research Advanced Materials Intelligence service and asserts “CMCs have best disruptive potential. Ceramic matrix composites (CMCs) have the highest potential to displace current structural materials in new use cases. In this segment, Free Form Fibers …”  is an example of a start-up “…in the ‘High-potential’ quadrant.”