Flight Design, a German ultralight aircraft company, selected Hexcel’s HexPly® M79 low-temperature curing prepreg for aircraft production, transforming the manufacturing process.

Flight Design has been manufacturing light sport aircraft since 1996, relying on composite materials and using vacuum consolidated wet laminated carbon fiber structures to keep the aircraft lightweight and strong.

More recently, Flight Design added the Ultralight Super Series and F2 series to its catalog, and in doing so decided to work with a long-term supplier of composite materials, Lange + Ritter GmbH, to explore the use of prepregs to create a consistent material quality and produce an even lighter and stronger aircraft at a competitive cost without the use of autoclaves.

Lange + Ritter, part of Hexcel’s supplier network, suggested Hexcel’s HexPly® M79 prepregs as a solution. HexPly M79 prepregs met and exceeded the requirements as they can be cured at temperatures as low as 70˚C reducing tooling costs and increasing build rates. HexPly M79 UD carbon tapes can be laminated with reduced debulking steps to produce void contents <1% irrespective of laminate thickness, allowing designers to optimize highly loaded composite aerostructures.