Collaboration – “With collaboration comes great things,” said Marcy Offner, director of marketing communications at Composites One, before introducing panelists at Good Day, CAMX! During the event, executives from Re:Build Manufacturing, Victrex and Elroy Air talked about their collaboration – built on transparency and open communication – to develop next-generation aerospace structures and lead the adoption of thermoplastic materials.  

“In this industry, the things we are trying to do are really challenging,” said Jay Wakenshaw, COO of Elroy Air. “One small group is not going to get there. It’s really a team sport.” 

There were countless examples of teamwork throughout the exhibit hall. 9T Labs AG, providers of carbon composite 3D printing, unveiled its collaboration with Purdue University. Together, they will research and test the potential for manufacturing structural aerospace composite applications at scale with 9T Labs’ Additive Fusion Technology (AFT). 9T Labs and the team in Purdue’s Composite Manufacturing and Simulation Center are developing the application workflow to efficiently engineer and manufacture high-performance parts using bulk molding compound (BMC) chips and continuous fiber 3D-printed preforms. 

“This new partnership with Purdue is an additional step toward building a consortium of partners from academia and industry to penetrate the market and accelerate the adoption of AFT and composite materials for a broad application field,” said Martin Eichenhofer, CEO and co-founder of 9T Labs. 

Sustainability – “As an industry, we are being challenged more than ever to create a truly sustainable solution from dramatically reducing the environmental impact throughout our supply chain to finding far-reaching and meaningful solutions for the end of life of our products,” said Fred Sanford, ACMA chairman of the board at Good Day, CAMX! “I believe our industry is committed to finding the answers to these challenges so that composites become the unquestionable sustainable material of choice.” 

The industry’s commitment to sustainability was represented throughout CAMX 2022, from featured sessions covering the outlook for sustainability and net zero practices to exhibitors displaying products with bio-based and recycled materials. More than 70 industry leaders gathered at the Sustainability Forum on Monday before the conference. John Schweitzer, vice president of EH&S and sustainability at ACMA, discussed the association’s Climate Impacts Project, which will provide members with tools, resources and education. 

“I like to think that sustainability is next to safety in importance,” said Dave Hartman, senior principal scientist at Owens Corning and chair of ACMA’s Composites Sustainability Council. “We want to leave the world a better place, and it’s all about people working together to make it happen.” 

Perhaps the best parting message for attendees and exhibitors heading home from CAMX 2022,  is one delivered by ACMA President and CEO Cindy L. Squires, Esq., during the opening General Session: “There are tremendous opportunities for our industry, paving the way for composites to be one of the most important technologies of the next decade.”