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RapidMade|Aerolite: Thermoformable Carbon Fiber

Aerolite: Thermoformable Carbon Fiber

We're revolutionizing carbon fiber manufacturing!

97% faster cycle times.

75% reduced costs.

Unprecedented scalability.

RapidMade|Aerolite: Thermoformable Carbon Fiber

Aerolite Carbon is the industry’s first blend of cost effectiveness and high performance. It’s easy and affordable to manufacture into final parts without sacrificing performance or premium aesthetics. 

Aerolite Carbon improves the customer experience with as-molded cosmetic finishes, textures and embossment capabilities and offers OEMs the chance to differentiate their products in the market without prohibitive initial costs.

Why is traditional carbon fiber so expensive?

Traditional carbon fiber manufacturing is extremely expensive in the United States due to a labor-intensive hand lay-up processes and prolonged curing times using heat or pressure. Highly skilled US labor hand making parts can cost upwards of $80 – $120 per hour and individual parts can take several hours of labor to make.

Additionally, part cycle times are slow because each mold can only produce one part during a typical 2-4 hour cure cycle, increasing tooling costs and making scaling difficult. 

Hand labor also produces inconsistent quality which increases quality control costs and results in high scrap rates.

Why is Aerolite carbon fiber so affordable?

Thermoformable Aerolite Carbon Fiber addresses these carbon fiber manufacturing challenges by significantly reducing cycle times and labor costs. This innovative process eliminates most hand labor, allowing for automated production and consistent quality.

By thermoforming, cycle times are cut from hours to minutes, enabling high-volume production and reducing tooling costs.

The result is a streamlined, cost-effective manufacturing process with improved scalability, lower quality control expenses, and minimal scrap rates, making Aerolite Carbon Fiber an efficient and reliable alternative to traditional methods.

Aerolite Carbon Fiber Technical Data Sheet

ProductC15C30
Carbon Content15%, by weight30%, by weight
Available Thickness1.5 mm / 2.5 mm1.5 mm / 2.5 mm
Sheet Density1.02 g/cm31.19 g/cm3
Tensile Strength115 MPa (16.6 ksi)200 MPa (29.0 ksi)
Tensile Modulus6450 MPa (935 ksi)12900 MPa (1870 ksi)
Flexural Strength180 MPa (26.1 ksi)253 MPa (36.6 ksi)
Flexural Modulus6800 MPa (986 ksi)13100 MPa (1900 ksi)

Never Compromise on Strength and Stiffness!

RapidMade|Aerolite: Thermoformable Carbon Fiber

Applications

RapidMade|Aerolite: Thermoformable Carbon Fiber

Design Guidelines for Thermoforming Carbon Fiber

Our carbon fiber parts follow the same design guidelines as our standard thermoformed plastics. Best practices for standard materials like HDPE or ABS are typically best practices for carbon fiber. There may be additional limitations that we can address during individual design review of your parts. 

When designing parts to be thermoformed, there are a few important considerations to ensure consistency. Draw ratio, or the ratio of the part’s depth to its width, cannot exceed 4:3. We recommend a maximum draw depth of 1:1 if possible or quality may suffer. We can build a pre-stretch box to help with this but it adds cost.

Due to shrinkage thermoformed parts also require 2-3 degrees of draft for internal surfaces and 3-5 degrees of draft for external surfaces in order to be removed from their molds. We will adjust your models for shrinkage!

To learn more about mold and part designs, check out our dedicated page – Thermoforming Design for Manufacturing (DFM) Guide.

RapidMade|Aerolite: Thermoformable Carbon Fiber
An example of the detail achievable with thermoformed carbon fiber - sharp corners and crisp text!

Meet Your Thermoforming Sales Representative

RapidMade|Aerolite: Thermoformable Carbon Fiber

Micah Chaban, VP of Sales and Marketing

Hi! Micah here – I am a founder of RapidMade, our Vice President of Sales and Marketing and a 15 year manufacturing industry veteran. I personally handle all thermoforming quotes, orders and customer relationships. I am at your disposal day or night and am our top technical expert on staff.

I consider a chief differentiator of RapidMade is its sales team. We put empowered technical experts such as myself up front on projects to make sure from the outset that your products are shepherded through the complicated process of custom tooling and manufacturing with care and accountability. Most of our competitors will put junior level staff in sales positions who have little knowledge of the process or influence to get things done for you.

You have my word that I will personally review all incoming projects – your CAD and drawings, ask the tough questions and provide honest feedback. I will provide an extremely detailed and thorough quote up front that defines the scope of your project and our commitments to you. I will personally make sure your project is delivered on time and with industry leading quality from start to finish.

We at RapidMade are proud of our work and look forward to your toughest challenges!