The organizing committee for the SPE Automotive Composites Conference & Exhibition (ACCE) issued its annual call for part-competition nominations for the Most Innovative Composites Application as part of the group's annual event, September 9-11, 2015 in Novi, Mich. in the Detroit suburbs. Prizes will be awarded in three categories ― Materials Innovation and Process Innovation (selected by members of the SPE ACCE planning committee), and People's Choice (selected by conference attendees) ― with winning teams receiving recognition and a trophy after lunch on the last day of the show.

There is no cost to enter the competition. Any registered conference participant (speakers, sponsors/exhibitors, or attendees) may nominate original equipment or aftermarket composite parts on passenger cars or light trucks from any geography.  The only requirement is that parts must be on a vehicle available for commercial sale and the OEM must give permission.  Nomination instructions may be found at http://speautomotive.com/comp.htm.  Preliminary descriptions and photos about the application’s innovations are due August 30, 2015 and should be eMailed to ACCEpapers@speautomotive.com.  Physical parts must be brought to the SPE ACCE for final review by judges during a formal walk-through at the show. 

Last year, the Body Exteriors award went to Mitsubishi Rayon Co., Ltd. (Tokyo), which nominated the CFRP (carbon fiber-reinforced plastic) decklid made by prepreg compression molding process featured on the Nissan GT-R supercar by Nissan Motor Co. Ltd., and the event's new People's Choice award (chosen by conference attendees) went to then Momentive Specialty Chemicals Inc. (now Hexion Inc., Columbus, Ohio) for its nomination of lightweight carbon fiber door structure with Class A appearance on the Porsche 911 GT Cup supercar produced by Porsche AG.

In 2013, Plasan Carbon Composites (Wixom, Mich.) swept the competition in all three categories. The company's nomination of the hood for the Corvette Stingray sports car from General Motors Co., produced in carbon fiber-reinforced composites via Plasan's new out-of-autoclave pressure press technology, won the Body Exterior category.  And Plasan won both Body Interior and People's Choice awards with its nomination of the engine X-brace on the SRT Viper from then Chrysler Group LLC (now FCA US LLC (Fiat Chrysler Automobiles) produced in autoclave-cured carbon composites.  In 2012, the first year that the SPE ACCE featured a parts competition, Asahi Kasei North America (Fowlerville, Mich.) won the Best Part award with its nomination of the twin-sheet thermoformed glass-reinforced polypropylene composite on the Ram Box assembly with lid on Dodge Ram pickups from then Chrysler Group LLC.

Held annually in suburban Detroit, the ACCE draws over 900 speakers, exhibitors, sponsors, and attendees and provides an environment dedicated solely to discussion and networking about advances in the transportation composites.  Its global appeal is evident in the diversity of exhibitors, speakers, and attendees who come to the conference from Europe, the Middle East, Africa, and Asia / Pacific as well as North America.  Fully one-third of attendees indicate they work for automotive and light truck, agriculture, truck & bus, or aviation OEMs, and another 25% represent tier suppliers.  Attendees also work for composite materials, processing equipment, additives, or reinforcement suppliers; trade associations, consultants, university and government labs; media; and investment bankers.  The show has been jointly sponsored by the SPE Automotive and Composites Divisions since 2001.  For more information, see http://speautomotive.com/comp.htm or http://specomposites.com

 

About the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE)

The mission of SPE is to promote scientific and engineering knowledge relating to plastics.  SPE’s Automotive and Composites Divisions work to advance plastics and plastic-based composites technologies worldwide and to educate industry, academia, and the public about these advances.  Both divisions are dedicated to educating, promoting, recognizing, and communicating technical accomplishments for all phases of plastics and plastic-based composite developments, including materials, processing, equipment, tooling, design and testing, and application development. For more information, see www.4spe.org