Funding intended to drive the use of high performance supercomputers to advance U.S. manufacturing via public-private partnerships is expected to have corollary effect of carbon fiber manufacturing technology development.

U.S. Department of Energy Advanced Manufacturing Office’s HPC4Mfg Program awarded grants to Harper International and Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) for a project that will focus on analysis of critical processing factors – such as temperature, gas flow and chemical reaction – in carbon fiber production equipment. “Development and Validation of Simulation Capability for the High Capacity Production Carbon Fiber” will ensure designs provide the necessary uniformity to produce fiber of a certain quality, output and cost ideal for automotive applications, says Harper.

Project results will be validated at the pilot-scale equipment designed and installed by Harper at ORNL’s Carbon Fiber Technology Facility prior to testing in a commercial production facility.