Carbon fiber from bitumen?

Discussion in 'Fred's House of Pancakes' started by Marine Ray, Nov 4, 2019.

  1. Marine Ray

    Marine Ray Senior Member

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    Article mentions our Prime's carbon fiber hatch in first paragraph. Then goes on to say "Carbon fibre is a material perfectly suited to electric vehicles...it’s far stronger than steel – up to 10 times as strong – and much lighter. Plus it doesn’t corrode...Carbon fibre costs as much as US$7 per pound wholesale, compared to about 40 cents per pound for steel or 80 cents for aluminum."

    Is carbon fibre Alberta's next profit gusher? | Corporate Knights
     
  2. noonm

    noonm Active Member

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    Presumably, anything containing carbon could be made into carbon fiber.

    That being said, it looks like its only being made in scale from oil, likely due to practical reasons. However, this is an area ripe for disruption for those willing to invest the time and money.
     
  3. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The other One Percenter.....

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    Steel and aluminum conduct electricity....and 80 centavos versus 700 is a non-trivial difference in a vehicle type that already has fierce headwinds with initial cost.
     
  4. wjtracy

    wjtracy Senior Member

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    Just about everything is made from petroleum, and making from alternates is often poplular but way worse for the environment and way more expensive. How do you like those mice chomping at your soy-based car wiring?
     
  5. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    The plant based method in post #2 results in the same chemical for carbon fiber as from petroleum without the nasty by products.
     
  6. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    So does carbon.
    Wasn't Edison's first light bulb a crude carbon fiber ?
    Or more correctly, some kind of fiber coated with carbon ??
     
  7. evpv

    evpv Active Member

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    The article is a little off, the strands of carbon fiber in the molded plastic Prime hatch are short, around 10mm. It’s basically molded plastic with pieces of carbon fiber added for strength.

    Long strands are used for woven carbon fiber, typically found on race car chassis etc.

    CFSMC - Wikipedia
     
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  8. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The other One Percenter.....

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    I was thinking that carbon fiber unit bodies might have grounding problems, and so my comment was unclear - carbon does conduct electricity but not as well as other commonly used metals.
    And this is CARBON.
    I'm thinking that epoxy impregnated carbon filaments might not even be quite as conductive as carbon isn't.
    At the very least there are going to be issues other than the fact that carbon fiber is something like 20x more expensive than mild steel and 10x more expensive than aluminium - a material that has it's OWN grounding issues, conductivity notwithstanding.

    When I went from the tennis-shoe Navy to the combat boot Navy, I learned that vehicle wiring (and a great many other things) is a little different in the old HMMWVs with their aluminum body construction.
    Even today.....preppers who buy these iconic vehicles have to purchase supplementary grounding harnesses and constantly fight electrical issues.

    My finely honed Spidey senses are telling me that EVangelists who are going for the hat trick (fossil free, L5, financially attainable by the 99-percenters) should.....ah......"steer clear" from carbon.

    At least at first.

    [​IMG]
     
    #9 ETC(SS), Nov 5, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2019
  9. evpv

    evpv Active Member

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    There are already several cars that use woven carbon fiber chassis, so apparently they have figured out a way to ground them properly.

    The plastic/carbon fiber SMC panels that Toyota is using on a few vehicles are for doors and trim pieces, not for the structure of the chassis.
     
  10. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    The body and frame of a vehicle do not NEED to be connected to the negative side of the power supply (battery)......that is just a convenient and cheap way to do it with a metal chassis.
    Without that, you must run a negative wire along with each positive one somehow.
     
  11. ETC(SS)

    ETC(SS) The other One Percenter.....

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    Concur, but i would characterize it also as affordable and efficient.

    One might recall that the soy based wire referred to earlier as being more eco-chic, BUT there have been negative consequences resulting from that engineering choice......and it WAS a CHOICE, not a necessity.
    All I'm saying is that building a replacement for a Boeing 747 might be a wise thing to do, but you really don't want to build the thing while you're flying it....at night.....in a storm.....over the Pacific ocean.

    Everybody always wants a "moon shot" program without regarding the fact that it was waaaay more expensive than it needed to be.....way deadlier than it had to be, AND we're trying to teach ourselves how to go back there because we haven't BEEN back in like, a half a century which some have argued is proof that the trip was unnecessary to begin with.
    I lean away from that conclusion, but concur wholeheartedly with the wasteful and inefficient method.

    When I worked with dot.gov we had field tests that principle investigators would not move to the right....even by ONE day under the theory that delays beget delays and pretty soon you have a failure to launch. That IS a valid point but if you want to delay the acceptance of BEVs for the great unwashed masses, then sacrificing affordability, reliability, and utility seems to be a pretty good way to go.


    If one presumes that a crash programme is "needed" to replace 'gassers' with BEVs, and if one also presumes that a corresponding shit away from a fossil based power grid is also needed on a crash programme schedule, then you may want to lean away from unnecessary complications at first.
     
    #12 ETC(SS), Nov 5, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 5, 2019
  12. ice9

    ice9 Member

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  13. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web i3 and Prime

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    My understanding is Edison used carbonized bamboo in his earliest light bulbs.

    Bob Wilson
     
  14. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web i3 and Prime

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    Found a technical source about bio-feedstock for acrylonitrile. I was hoping lignite might be the source but apparently this is 'vat' processing of sugars:
    Renewable acrylonitrile production | Science

    Abstract
    Acrylonitrile (ACN) is a petroleum-derived compound used in resins, polymers, acrylics, and carbon fiber. We present a process for renewable ACN production using 3-hydroxypropionic acid (3-HP), which can be produced microbially from sugars. The process achieves ACN molar yields exceeding 90% from ethyl 3-hydroxypropanoate (ethyl 3-HP) via dehydration and nitrilation with ammonia over an inexpensive titanium dioxide solid acid catalyst. We further describe an integrated process modeled at scale that is based on this chemistry and achieves near-quantitative ACN yields (98 ± 2%) from ethyl acrylate. This endothermic approach eliminates runaway reaction hazards and achieves higher yields than the standard propylene ammoxidation process. Avoidance of hydrogen cyanide as a by-product also improves process safety and mitigates product handling requirements.

    Bob Wilson
     
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  15. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    Coal generally isn't considered a bio-feedstock.:D

    Lignin is a complex molecule, and tough to break apart. It is mostly left intact by the enzymes used to break down cellulose to sugars. You would probably have to break it down by pyrolysis or thermal conversion to get compounds suitable for making plastics.

    Organic acids from sugars is easy. We have a wide range of bacteria and fungi at our disposal for this. Gylcerol might work as a feedstock for the 3-HP, which is a waste product from biodiesel production.
     
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  16. Georgina Rudkus

    Georgina Rudkus Senior Member

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    Epoxides used in carbon fiber are exceptionally hard to recycle, as well as carbon fiber, Nylon amide plastics filled with glass fibers are much more efficient and have replaced steel of yesteryear for interior dashboard and components like shifter frames.

    As such, steel will still remain as the preferred mainstream material for car bodies, with aluminum being used for premium vehicles.
     
  17. bwilson4web

    bwilson4web i3 and Prime

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    I was thinking mechanically, lignin is the right structure for very fine, carbon fibers:
    https://www.nature.com/articles/s41598-018-24328-9

    [​IMG]

    If only there were someway to remove the 'radicals' and link the 'carbon' rings, it would provide a direct wood to carbon fiber production. The strength of carbon fiber is constant regardless of the length. So putting them in matrix instantly makes a stronger and potentially lighter product.

    Bob Wilson
     
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  18. Trollbait

    Trollbait It's a D&D thing

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    There just hasn't been much demand up to now for recycable epoxides, but that is changing.

    https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/20550340.2019.1639967
    "Matrix and laminate properties were compared to a benchmark commercial epoxy presently used in commercial wind blades. Results showed that vacuum infusion with the recyclable resins yielded laminates with low void contents and properties comparable to non-recyclable commercial epoxies, and the recovered glass fibers retained surface quality comparable to virgin fibers. Furthermore, results also showed that the recovered matrix residue can be re-used in second-life applications, effectively completing the closed-loop recycling method in this study."

    There are other processes for recycling composites in place, as the EU has banned disposal of it in landfills. The issue there is that the recovered material isn't as usable as the virgin ones.

    I can't get past the abstract here at home, but here is an overview from 2018 on lignin fibers.
    https://iopscience.iop.org/article/10.1088/2053-1591/aaba00/pdf
    "After isolation procedures, lignin repolymerizes in a different manner compared to when it is in its natural form. Some studies have shown that some organic functions, the molecular weight and the structure conformation of the lignin can favor or disfavor thermal mobility. Although it is known purification is considered a criterion that favors extrusion, there is no study involving a selection of parameters that improves thermal mobility. Herein, it is highlighted a set of desired structure properties that provides a very good thermal mobility and extrusion in order to obtain a lignin-based carbon fiber with good properties."

    In this thesis from 2010, it sounds like the process of the making lignin fibers was to spin them like you would to make thread. The resulting fibers were brittle. http://www.if.ufrrj.br/biolig/art_citados/LIGNIN-BASED%20CARBON%20FIBER.pdf Which probably good enough for replacement to lower end carbon fiber composites made with shredded fibers. The good, high strength carbon fiber composites use woven mats of long fiber strands.

    To get comparable lengths of lignin fiber, you would need to extract it from intact plant stalks or wood rods. That will be a time consuming process to remove the cellulose and hemicellulose, because of surface area. We mill material down to 1mm for liquidfaction at work, and then it can take three days for the enzymes to break the cellulose down into sugars. So it seems getting lignin in a form that can be fed through an extruder is key to making a direct replacement to carbon fiber.

    Now I'm wondering about that peroxide boiled wood that was posted here not to long ago. The lignin is probably completely destroyed, but could the carbon residue be reformed into graphene.
     
    #19 Trollbait, Nov 6, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 6, 2019
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  19. sam spade 2

    sam spade 2 Senior Member

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    If done right, chassis grounding is OK.

    The Honda motorcycles of the late 60's and early 70's made a little oversight with the design though.
    They counted on the steering head bearings to keep ground continuity to the electrical components mounted on the forks.
    That worked for a lot of years but eventually the bearings rusted a bit and the grease dried out and became a good insulator.
    At that point, the headlight and turn signals became intermittent and eventually stopped working completely.
    The fix was a simple ground strap from the frame to the forks.

    And since you mentioned airplanes, it is my understanding that they don't rely on body/chassis grounding for ANY of the electrical return paths on planes. It's a reliability thing.
     
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