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Tri-Mack expands capabilities to meet aerospace supply chain challenges

The aerospace industry is thriving—and is predicted to continue on an upward trajectory into the next decade. Demand for new aircraft is expected to support annual industry-wide growth of approximately seven percent, an increase of more than 50 percent by 2021. 

As the expansion continues, new materials development is emerging as a clear winner in the search for more cost-effective solutions for keeping fuel costs down as passenger-miles soar. Industry customers are increasingly asking their suppliers to provide lighter, yet stronger composite material alternatives to aircraft components that have traditionally been made from metal.

Tri-Mack Plastics Manufacturing Corporation, a leading manufacturer of high-performance engineered components, has found the formula for meeting their clients' needs for lower cost, lightweight, high-quality thermoplastic parts and assemblies through a combination of innovative technology, materials expertise and customer collaboration. While other suppliers have downsized and outsourced, the 40 year-old company recently hired almost three dozen new employees, opened a newAdvanced Composites Center, and is already planning to expand its onsite facilities in Bristol, R.I.

The Advanced Composites Center is dedicated to processing the latest thermoplastic composites (TPCs) that offer Tri-Mack's customers in aerospace and other industries lightweight, robust, alternatives to heavier, more traditional materials. Key benefits of TPCs include:

• TPCs are continuous fiber reinforced materials with exceptional mechanical properties. Tri-Mack works with prepreg tape and fabric—unidirectional and woven carbon and glass fibers in a high temperature polymer matrix—PEEK, PPS, PEI, etc.

• TPCs offer 10x the mechanical properties of injection molded plastics and are up to 70% lighter than metals. 

• Tri-Mack uses automated equipment to lay-up the unidirectional prepreg tape, consolidate low void laminates and thermoform complex shapes. Lay-ups can be tailored to align fiber orientation to optimize the performance of the finished part.

• TPCs are processed in minutes, not the hours required for thermoset composites. Unlike thermosets, TPCs' cost-effective manufacturing does not require freezers, autoclaves, or hand lay-ups.

• Tri-Mack produces hybrid components that combine the performance of TPCs with injection molding to create complex assemblies. Hybrids feature the key advantages of both processes: the outstanding mechanical properties of thermoplastic composites and the low cost of injection molding.

Tri-Mack recently completed a project to qualify over 200 part numbers for a large aerospace OEM—at an accelerated schedule. By converting the parts from steel to TPC, the company was also able to achieve an average weight savings of 40% percent for its customer.

“A tremendous amount of development goes into every aerospace project,” says Will Kain, Tri-Mack president. “Naturally, at times this strains capacity at the OEM level. We've always viewed our role as that of a valued supply chain partner, helping our clients complete their projects and meet their weight-savings goals. One key aspect of the Tri-Mack formula is that we've become an extension of our customers' engineering teams.

“In this partner role, we are helping customers by increasing our facility size, staff, and by adding cutting-edge research and technology,” states Kain. “Tri-Mack is more than a component manufacturer; we're managing processes, data and aggressive new product introduction schedules. This leads to success for all the parties involved.”

Tri-Mack provides their clients with access to an impressive technology lineup—which, in addition to their Advanced Composites Center, includes injection and compression molding, precision multi-axis machining, tool making, and a robotic injection molding cell—all backed by years of experience. From design for manufacturing to metal-to-plastic conversion, Tri-Mack's main objective is that each part they produce meets their clients' exact needs, whatever the materials involved.

“Going forward, Tri-Mack's continuous investment in capital equipment, technology and people ensures that we will be able to further increase our capacity, as well as offer our customers the very latest manufacturing technologies,” says Kain.

In addition to serving the aerospace industry, Tri-Mack also provides high-performance parts for critical applications in the chemical processing, medical, electronics, and industrial equipment markets.

Press release issued by Tri-Mack Plastics Manufacturing Corp on April 10, 2015

 

 Contact details from our directory:
Tri-Mack Plastics Manufacturing Corp Plastic Components

 

 Related directory sectors:
Plastics

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