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BMW, Boeing to jointly explore carbon fiber recycling

CTBR Staff Writer Published 14 December 2012

Multinational auto major BMW and aviation giant Boeing will come together to collaborate on a joint carbon fiber recycling initiative.

The scope of the collaboration also includes knowledge sharing of manufacturing processes and joint exploration of automation opportunities.

Both BMW and Beoing are set for a greater use of carbon fiber in their products - with the former employing the material in its i3 and i8 models and the latter making its 787 Dreamliner with at least 50% carbon fiber.

Commenting on the collaboration Boeing Commercial Airplanes vice president of product development Larry Schneider remarked that the companies were taking an important step towards developing the use and end use of carbon fiber materials.

"It is especially important that we plan for the end of life of products made from carbon fiber. We want to look at ways to reclaim and reuse those materials to make new products.

"Our work with the BMW Group will help us attain that goal," said Schneider.

Through the partnership the companies are looking at exploring recycling options for composite material at point of use and at the end of the product life - both of which are important for each of the companies.

BMW member of the board for development Herbert Diess added, "Boeing has many years of extensive experience using carbon fiber in the field of aviation, while the BMW Group has earned a significant competitive advantage through its use of special manufacturing methods for series production of carbon fiber parts.

"Through this cooperation we can merge know-how between our industries in the field of sustainable production solutions."