We're excited to talk about a new high end race bike that Cervelo Cycles lauched today. The Rca is Cervelo's newest lightweight, stiff race bike and it features a Nanovate metal toughened composite fork steer tube to maximize toughness, damage resistance and weight of the component.
While the Nanovate metal is very similar in hardness to a tool steel, which increases the surface hardness of the composite by over 10x, the Nanovate metal also has a high elastic limit, allowing it to flex and withstand all the strain normally seen by a composite part. As a result of work with the aerospace industry, Integran has developed unique adhesion technologies for metalizing composites which have been utilized here as well.
Interestingly, because only a thin coating of Nanovate is required to add durability, the actual weight of the overall fork went DOWN and sits at a remarkable 300g (uncut).
Cervelo has been on the forefront of technology adoption in the bike industry and this has resulted in some high profile wins, like last years Giro D'Italia win by Ryder Hesjedal. This use of Nanovate also contributed to a 2012 "JEC Innovation Award" win for Cervelo's Rca at the internationally recognized JEC composites show in Paris. Integran was recognized as a partner of Cervelo for this award.
You can see this on Cervelo's slick site here.
The damage tolerance added by the Nanovate metal improves composites in the areas of: rain erosion, sand erosion, wear resistance, impact resistance and fatigue resistance after an impact event.
Benefits as defined by Cervelo are in this slide below (note: PowerMetal is Integran's licensee for sporting goods applications)
Do you have a composite part where we might be able to help improve the durability and weight of the part?