CAMX Marks an Attendance Milestone with Nearly 8000 Attendees

Thank you to everyone who participated in CAMX 2016, making it a great success. Overall attendance exceeded CAMX 2015 by almost 10% with 7,987 registrations this year, solidifying CAMX’s position as North America’s premiere Composites and Advanced Materials event.  Participants came from over 50 countries and every state in the US, and the exhibit floor was larger than 2015, with 544 exhibiting companies and over 300,000 sq. feet of exhibit space.  CAMX also welcomed the hundreds of new attendees who made Anaheim their first CAMX.  CAMX is committed to offering you a bigger and better experience each year!

Without doubt, CAMX provided the largest conference program anywhere for the industry. With 254 sessions on topics covering every subject in the industry, and 313 expert speakers, conference attendees had over 13 concurrent tracks of topics to choose from.

If you missed this year’s CAMX – or if you attended but weren’t able to see everything –  check out what you missed by viewing the highlights.

Preview the New General Session Format –  CAMX Live!

camx-live-presenter-daniel-preston-at-camx-2016

This year, CAMX introduced CAMX Live!, a new General Session format, featuring a panel of innovators and industry leaders with comprehensive “TED Talk” styled presentations, exploring the current innovation and future opportunities for our industry. View one of the three presentations, featuring Daniel Preston, CEO/CTO of Luminati—available online now!

Exhibit Hall Inspires

When CAMX 2016 kicked off its General Session on Tuesday, one tidbit of wisdom from Owens Corning’s Marcio Sandri stood out. “We must demystify composites.” He said that industry outsiders view composite materials as exotic and expensive, and the way to dispel those characterizations is for people to see composites in action and show them what composites are capable of. Inside this year’s exhibit hall, the composites industry answered this challenge by displaying innovations impacting a wide range of markets, including automotive, 3-D printing and recycling.

One of the biggest attractions on this year’s show floor was the uBox – an electric, urban utility concept vehicle at Teijin’s booth that was built by Clemson University graduate students. It was designed for urban environments so that it would appeal to Generation Z consumers while simultaneously meeting ambitious fuel economy standards.

Clemson used composites to reduce the weight, minimize part count and simplify the assembly of the uBox. Composites were used to make the vehicle’s doors, a lot of the internal body panels and the crash rail panels. However, according to Clemson graduate student Aditya Yerra, the vehicle’s roof rail, which Teijin helped make with high-strength, curved, composite pultrusions, has been the real showstopper.

“[People] have never imagined a curved pultrusion with such a complex cross-section,” Yerra told Composites Manufacturing on the show floor. “But there’s a lot of benefits to pultrusion, [such as] high fiber volume and low manufacturing cost.” He added that CAMX attendees have been particularly impressed that the car was built by students in just two years, and that the uBox is now a functional prototype that meets federal regulations.

Another eye-catching item was a surfboard on display at Connora Technologies’ booth that was made with recyclable carbon fiber/epoxy composites. In fact, there were many bikes, surfboards, skateboards and other sports and recreation applications on display throughout the show. Simon Kosinski, the director of process chemistry at Connora, attributes the abundance of such products to a combination of increased demand for composites in the sports and recreation market as well as how much easier it is to apply composites to sporting applications compared to other markets.

CAMX attendees were also enthralled by the wide range of 3-D printing applications on display. While Cincinnati Incorporated’s (CI) Big Area Additive Manufacturing machine is far too big to fit in a booth, the company drew plenty of interest in the technology that has produced everything from a 3-D printed Shelby Cobra to Local Motors’ self-driving 3-D printed bus, Olli.

Next door to CI was Stratasys, a global leader in 3-D printing who enticed visitors with its Fortus 450mc 3D Production System. According to David Dahl, an applications engineer at Stratasys, seeing 3-D printing in action has changed many people’s preconceived notions about it. Dahl jokes that many people stopped by during the beginning of a print, then came back later “like waiting on a pizza to cook.”

“The process is pretty straightforward,” Dahl said. “Once [people] see [3-D printing], they realize it’s not some obscure technology. And then they start seeing the applications and you can see the gears spinning for how a composite is forming.”

Show floor visitors also flocked around the Lean Mean Molding Machine from Composites One, the Closed Mold Alliance and Magnum Venus Products (MVP). During demo sessions, attendees watched engineers make parts that can be applied to infrastructure, architecture, corrosion, aerospace, transportation, marine and more. For many first time attendees, such as Praphulla Chandra, a CAE Engineer at BASF Corporation, the live demos were a great opportunity to get exposed to new and unfamiliar manufacturing processes. Chandra had the chance to see the “New Tooling Technology” session, where engineers prepared a CNC plug mold with GURU advanced tooling from Soul Composites. Chandra explained that his area expertise is compression molding, and at BASF, he hasn’t had much exposure to wet lay-up.

CAMX 2017 Returns to the East Coast –  Save the Date!

North America’s largest composites and advanced materials expo returns to the east coast in 2017. Mark your calendars for the must-attend event, with new innovations, an exciting, new exhibit hall lay-out with new features and engagement opportunities, plus much more! See you in Orlando, FL, at the Orange County Convention Center, on September 11 – 14, 2017.

CAMX 2016 Ends with Insights from the Next Generation

CAMX concluded with a luncheon featuring a panel of students who offered their insights on how advances in composites are changing the world.

One of the students on the panel, Caleb Lystrup, a PhD student at Brigham Young University, believes there is an overwhelming amount of exciting work being done in the industry that young professionals should want to be a part of. Read on to learn more about the thoughts and aspirations of the industry’s next generation.

“There are so many awesome projects,” Lystrup said. “A couple that come to mind are lightweight skyscrapers made with iso-truss reinforcements and high performance vehicles that are made at a low cost and with eco-friendly processes out of composites.” He is excited about the trend toward increased out-of-autoclave manufacturing, where manufacturers get “awesome parts at a fraction of the cost.”

Another panelist, Kristin Hardin, a PhD student at The University of Alabama at Birmingham (UAB), said that while composites have become widespread and used for incredible things, there is even greater potential for the industry moving forward if businesses embrace sustainability.

“Twenty years from now, I really do hope we have a robust recycling system in place, like familiar plastics and metals do right now,” Hardin said. “Finding a labeling system and how to collect that material and having a database out there presents a great opportunity for industry collaboration.”

Thomas Nanni, a senior at the University of Miami, echoed Hardin’s sentiments, saying that if the industry works toward sustainability, it can “come into the world as a field that’s already green instead of an existing field that needs to become green.”

The panelists also discussed what students and young professionals are looking for from a potential employer. Hardin noted that employers need to take investment in young talent seriously, and that whether businesses like it or not, young innovators represents the future and vitality of the industry.

“I really like an environment that fosters creativity from the bottom up as well as from the top down, and also an employer that promotes education and growth for their employees through education programs and further education opportunities,” Hardin said. “I’d also like to see an employer that promotes diversity.”

Recognition and Innovation at CAMX 2016

CAMX 2016 attendees experienced cutting-edge innovation and next generation technologies. The product innovation awards and Poster Session awards, as well as the Technical Paper Awards, presented at CAMX recognized researchers and organizations whose work will impact the future of the industry. Read on to learn about the CAMX Award winners.

The CAMX Combined Strength Award, sponsored by Ashland Inc., went to Continental Structural Plastics (CSP) for its innovative multi-material decklid concept. CSP received support from partners at Owens Corning, Compose Tooling Expert, Altair Engineering, PPE, Hexion and Brandolph. The decklid features CSP’s signature TCA Ultra Lite™ on the outside and a carbon fiber resin transfer molded (RTM) material on the inside. CSP says the decklid weighs just 12.11 pounds, which is a 13 percent weight savings over a similar decklid made from aluminum.

The CAMX Unsurpassed Innovation Award, sponsored by Ashland, Inc., went to Kreysler & Associates for its ultra-lightweight and fire-resistant fiber-reinforced polymer (FRP) cladding panel system. The cladding was used to make the façade for the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA). The façade contains 700 “rain screen” panels, which cover and help waterproof the 10-story building. The cladding saved “an enormous amount of weight and installation cost” in the construction of the façade compared to traditional glass fiber reinforced concrete.

Awards for Composites Excellence (ACE Awards), sponsored by Composites One, went to:

Design Category: Most Creative Application Award

Strongwell for using pultruded FRP to replace aluminum for the silver flow.

Manufacturing Category: Materials and Process Innovation Award

Oak Ridge National Laboratory for its 3D printing of high temperature thermoplastic molds.

Manufacturing Category: Equipment and Tooling Innovation Award

Composites Alliance Corp. for its innovative robotic preform cell providing 3D stacking and control.

Market Growth Category: Infinite Possibility for Market Growth Award

Ashland Performance Materials for its sheet molding composite in the truck bed of the 2017 Honda Ridgeline.

The CAMX 2016 Poster Session award recognized:

Lorena Fernández-Cañadas, Inés Iváñez, and Sonia Sanchez-Saez from the University Carlos III of Madrid and Ever Barbero from West Virginia University for their paper, Influence of the Adhesive Thickness on the Energy Release Rate of Adhesively-Bonded Composite Repairs.

CAMX congratulations all of our Award winners and finalists in each competition! Click here to read more on this year’s awardees and finalists – including the nine Technical Paper Awards winners (announced prior to CAMX).

Stay Connected – and Share the CAMX Experience Year-Round

Join the CAMX social media communities to receive updates on abstract submission, new exhibitors and features, session topics, product displays and demonstrations, as well as technology and innovation. Plus, watch videos, crowdsource your questions, and network with fellow attendees. Share the CAMX experience year-round with these social media platforms:

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