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Driving Sustainable Innovation

How can motorsport help tackle climate change?

As motorsport begins to overcome the challenges of racing alongside the threat of COVID-19, there is a much bigger and more long-term threat facing the industry: climate change. Unfortunately, motorsport is per say not particularly eco-friendly. At the same time, there is a great opportunity to leverage the motorsports’ trademark expertise and innovative culture and use it to develop and scale sustainable and energy efficient technologies which can then trickle down into wider society.

Motorsport for Sustainable Innovations

On one hand motorsport is the sport most threatened by climate change but on the other, it is the only sport that can tackle climate change directly”, highlights Johann Wacht, Motorsport Manager at Bcomp. “This is the paradox of motorsport from John Glenn, retired EPA Official and Founder of U.S. Governments Green Racing Program.  We as a sport and industry have the power to decide whether motorsport promotes the wasteful use of energy or promotes sustainable innovation.

 

So how can motorsport achieve the latter? Well, motorsport provides a fantastic platform to showcase technologies and, with the brutal environment of racing pushing components to their limits, motorsport is the perfect proving ground. This is why Bcomp has developed ampliTex™ and powerRibs™ natural fibre composite materials for motorsport applications; to drive sustainable innovation whilst proving the feasibility on the highest level of performance engineering.

Replacing Carbon Fibres with Natural Fibres

Bcomp’s powerRibs™ technology consists of specifically engineered flax fibre yarns that have been woven together into a reinforcement grid. Combined with fabrics such as ampliTex™ they form a 3D grid structure on the b-side of parts, allowing to produce high performance thin-walled shell elements such as bodyworks. This sustainable lightweighting solution adds maximum stiffness at minimal weight and does not splinter under deformation like carbon fibre, improving safety on the racetrack. These benefits make powerRibs™ an ideal solution for race car bodywork and now this technology has transferred to road car interiors.

From Race to Road

“When you have an innovation, manufacturers want to see proof of concept and without proof of concept, there is little opportunity to scale,” highlights Wacht. “Motorsport gives us the opportunity to scale our natural fibre composites from smaller series of ten cars to larger series with a hundred cars. It proves that our materials are easy to scale up and are cost efficient, which shows OEM’s how quickly our materials could be adopted to road car applications, and thereby benefit the wider society.” 

 

It is not only the opportunity to showcase performance and scalability in motorsports that is helping Bcomp drive sustainable innovation into the automotive sector, but also motorsport’s increasing levels of road relevance. The surface quality of GT categories is now closer to road car standards than ever before. So Bcomp’s powerRibs™ have already been developed to meet the high quality requirements automotive manufacturers expect.

Remaining Agile and Maximising Impact

An additional advantage of working within motorsport is its competitive culture and short go to market times. This demands Bcomp to be agile, innovate quickly and accelerate development.

 

”Our motorsport customers continue to drive the performance and efficiency of our technologies together with our R&D department and Bcomp as a whole, because race teams work to short deadlines and usually need their parts yesterday,” says Wacht.

 

“Meeting the demands of motorsports helps us maximise performance, while at the same time proving the concept for serial production. The dynamics of the motorsports industry makes it a very interesting market. We want to play an important role in scaling up sustainable innovations within the sport and transfer them to wider applications in all mobility sectors. We believe that motorsport has recognized the momentum and will use its powerful tools to tackle climate change”, Wacht concludes.

Recent posts

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Jan 09, 2022

Job Opening – Technicien/Opérateur de Presse et de Test en R&D

To support its entire team during the ongoing hyper-growth phase, Bcomp is looking for a Technician/Press and Test Operator to join the R&D team. Bcomp Ltd. is a young and dynamic Swiss company specialised in the development, marketing and sales of natural fibre composite solutions for high performance applications. With a background in the sports industry, we are now focusing on entering the motorsports and mobility markets. To support our expanding R&D team and our entry into the automotive market, we are looking for a Technician/Press and Test Operator. Position Overview Your main responsibility as technician and operator of the press and for tests will consist of producing parts on our compression moulding set-up. Together with other members of the R&D team you will constantly work to optimise the compression moulding process and also perform tests for the mechanical characterisation of finished parts. Additionally you will have various tasks supporting the R&D team in the workshop. Requirements You are a solution driven, reliable and resilient person with an energetic mindset and very good manual skills who likes to work in a team. If you also speak French or German and have completed an apprenticeship in a technical sector, you should definitely check out the full job description by clicking on the link below. Come and work with us Our team is small, dynamic, international and works in a fast-paced, equal, and entrepreneurial environment. Each person takes responsibility for their work and contributes to a friendly work atmosphere with many laughs and a healthy appreciation for chocolate. Do you want to take part in the adventure of a young, fast-moving company, which is in full development in the automotive sector? Come on board and contribute to the development of our processes and products with your technical and practical knowledge and take part in the amazing working atmosphere of our company.We happily invite you to send us your full application through: workwithus@bcomp.ch Full Job Description Job Opening - Technicien/Opérateur de Presse et de Test en R&D

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Jan 04, 2022

Natural Fibre Composite Green Nacelle Now Undergoing Onshore Testing

Natural Fibre Composites in Action The Green Nacelle - a finalist for the 2021 JEC Innovation Awards - has recently been delivered to the client DOT (Delft Offshore Turbine). The full natural fibre composite nacelle has been designed and built by German company GREENBOATS with Bcomp's ampliTex™ technical flax fabrics and Sicomin's bio-based GreenPoxy resin systems, making it the largest offshore natural fibre composite structure to date. Thorough Testing Program The Green Nacelle has now been installed onshore and is currently undergoing an intense testing program. Once this first series of tests is completed, the natural fibre composite (NFC) structure will be transported to its offshore location where the Green Nacelle will serve its purpose in the production of renewable wind energy. Once the nacelle reaches its end-of-life, it will be dismantled and, thanks to the unique construction from large NFC sandwich panels, recycled and reused for new applications, prolonging the useful life of the materials.           Previous Next Learn More If you want to learn more about this interesting project and how the Green Nacelle was made, make sure to check out the original news article and press release: Natural fibre composite Green Nacelle nominated as a finalist for the JEC Innovation Awards

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Nov 25, 2021

Job Opening – HR Generalist

To support its entire team during the ongoing hyper-growth phase, Bcomp is looking for an HR Generalist who is passionate about owning and further developing all people and culture related activities of a growing team. Bcomp Ltd. is a young and dynamic Swiss company specialised in the development, marketing and sales of natural fibre composite solutions for high performance applications. With a background in the sports industry, we are now focusing on entering the motorsports and mobility markets. To support our growing team in all HR related activities, we are looking for an experienced HR generalist. Position Overview As HR Generalist you will manage the recruiting of our future colleagues and own all administrative HR processes along the employee lifecycle from onboarding to offboarding. Aside from taking an active part in HR and company projects, you will directly support the CEO during one day of the week. Most importantly though, you will be a cultural ambassador for the company and help in organising all sorts of team events. Requirements Education as an HR Specialist with federal diploma of higher education or equivalent. Multi-year professional experience in a comparable role and sound knowledge of Swiss social security scheme and labour law. Language: very good communication skills (oral and written) in English are a must, French and/or German are a plus. You are a solution driven, reliable and resilient person with an energetic mindset who likes to work in a team - everything is possible. For more information, check out the full job description by clicking on the link below. Come and work with us Our team is small, dynamic, international and works in a fast-paced, equal, and entrepreneurial environment. Each person takes responsibility for their work and contributes to a friendly work atmosphere with many laughs and a healthy appreciation for chocolate. Do you want to take part in the adventure of a young, fast-moving company, which is in full development in the automotive sector? Come on board and contribute to the development of our processes and products with your technical and practical knowledge and take part in the amazing working atmosphere of our company.We happily invite you to send us your full application through: workwithus@bcomp.ch Full Job Description Job Opening - HR Generalist

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Nov 18, 2021

Bcomp invests in new Fribourg production facility

Taking it to the next level In the course of its ongoing scale-up phase, Bcomp Ltd has reinforced its commitment to the city of Fribourg. In a recent step of expansion, Bcomp has established a new production facility in the heart of Fribourg. The new location allows the company to explore new ways of producing its natural fibre solutions for the global mobility market and to create a scalable production process. The state-of-the-art facility serves to produce our thermoplastic powerRibs™ technology for the large-scale mobility market. From the impregnation of the yarn to the knitting of our patented reinforcement grid - everything happens in-house, allowing us to fully control and optimise the process from start to finish. Committing to local production Locating a new production facility in a high-wage country like Switzerland may seem like an unusual choice. However, the facility is highly automated and requires relatively few but highly skilled operators. By co-locating the R&D and production teams in Fribourg Bcomp will be able to produce for customers while constantly optimising the process and the products. Bcomp’s CEO, Christian Fischer, comments: “When founding Bcomp, we selected Fribourg as the location for our facility because the city and its surroundings are quickly becoming a hub for innovation, know-how, and forward-looking companies. The great connections to all parts of Switzerland allow us to attract the highly qualified teammates we need from all the main population centres in Western and Central Switzerland." A thriving and supportive city This facility was made possible, in part, due to the continuous support of local actors like the Fribourg Development Agency, Friup and Capital Risque Fribourg. Bcomp is committed to operating with a high level of quality. And to that end, alongside the investment in the new production facility, Bcomp also became ISO 9001 certified.