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Carbon Fiber

A North Sails 3Di in action

Sail technology has come a long way since the days tall ships were carried along by billowing clouds of canvas. In fact, new aerodynamic discoveries coupled with exotic materials have turned modern sails into veritable works of high tech art. Today, sailmakers know that the less a sail distorts (through stretching, shear, compression or shrinkage) the more force or drive remains available to power the boat - especially helpful when you're in a close race for that final buoy. Now, the innovative designers at North Sails have woven an interesting array of tricks into their unique new 3Di line of "canvas" - laminated, heat-molded sails that hold their shape so well, they come close to performing like rigid airfoils.  Read More

Italian high fashion meets veteran bicycle engineering in the very expensive Bianchi by Gu...

When a cycling helmet is priced at nearly US$900, a pair of cycling gloves at over US$300 and a water bottle at US$105, it's a sure thing that the bike that goes with them is going to be really, really expensive. Such is the case with the new Bianchi by Gucci carbon fiber two-wheeler, which sees two Italian veterans come together for the release of this US$14,000 bike. Read on for a rundown of the key specs.  Read More

Advaero Helicopter Shafts - the carbon composite is lighter, stronger, more durable, does ...

When the Wright Brothers first took to the skies more than hundred years ago they did so with an aircraft made with a fabric skin. Over the years a variety of materials have been used including sheet metals such as aluminum and titanium, and even ceramics. A fabric of sorts has now returned in the form of carbon fiber, a composite material that offers greater strength-to-weight ratio than virtually anything else. While airplane manufacturers have used carbon fiber in airplanes for some time, its use is on the rise due to the material's durability and rigidity ... and with the advent of new manufacturing processes such as Advaero's Heat Vacuum Assisted Resin Transfer Method (HVARTM), this looks set to continue.  Read More

Teijin Senior Managing Director Norio Kamei (left) and GM Vice Chairman Steve Girsky shake...

Carbon fiber is nothing new to the automotive industry. Race teams and exotic automakers have been using it to decrease weight and boost performance for years. However, due to the great expense of production, carbon fiber hasn't yet extended past these top-end applications. With a new partnership, GM seeks to bring the advantages of carbon fiber to mainstream automobiles.  Read More

A kerb weight of 350 kg enables go-kart handling

There are many small cars with high-performance motorcycle engines, but there has never been one quite like the Spartan. Most use big in-line Japanese four cylinder engines which can produce meaty 200 bhp powerbands. The Spartan uses Ducati's 170 hp (106 kW) 1198 cc V-twin in a race chassis - there are no frills and the use of carbon fiber bodywork and the barest of essentials results in a kerb weight of 350 kg. Then there's the sound of the engine that won this year's World Superbike title just behind your left ear and the promise it feels at one with the driver ... it appears to be the perfect four-wheeled execution of the Ducati ethos. Fantastic picture library with this one.  Read More

The snail-like building is held together with a carbon fiber truss frame

Designer Christopher Daniel has conceptualized plans for this prefabricated house, which morphs and adapts according to its setting. Dubbed California Roll, the structure is best suited to a desert environment and incorporates a homogeneous exterior which reflects the sun's heat.  Read More

The Porsche Bike RS (pictured) joins Porsche's Driver's Selection range alongside the Bike...

Automobile manufacturers have been leveraging their brand names on other modes of transport for years, with bicycles a common focus from companies including BMW, Audi and McLaren. Porsche has also been producing bikes for years and has now expanded its Driver’s Selection range with the addition of two new bikes – the Bike RS and the Bike S. Both models are 29-inch wheelers and are constructed from lightweight materials and high-end components with performance in mind.  Read More

Its creators say the Oronero is the world's first limousine yacht tender with a convertibl...

Yacht tenders are generally open top boats that leave their passengers exposed to the elements, but Alex Pirard Yacht Design has created a more civilized option. Laying claim to the title of the the first yacht tender in the world to feature a convertible and completely automatized hard-top, Pirard's Oronero is designed to ferry its passengers in style regardless of weather conditions.  Read More

The carbon-fiber-heavy - or rather, light - Lamborghini Sesto Elemento

At the worldwide preview of the Lamborghini Gallardo LP 570-4 Super Trofeo Stradale at the 2011 Frankfurt Motor Show, Automobili Lamborghini President and CEO Stephan Winkelmann also announced the Lamborghini Sesto Elemento (Sixth Element) will be going into production. But don’t bother counting your pennies because the production run is limited to just 20 cars and all have already been spoken for.  Read More

Quimera's 700 bhp AEGT (All Electric Grand Tourer)

Quimera will show its long-awaited AEGT (All Electric GT) prototype at the Frankfurt Motor Show (IAA) this week. The AEGT runs three UQM electric motors developing a total 700 bhp and delivering a top speed currently limited to 300 km/h. The AEGT's lightweight carbon fiber monocoque chassis enables a kerb weight of just 1500 kg despite carrying more than 600 kg of lithium-polymer EIG batteries.  Read More

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