Waterbus composite ferry_

Solico engineered the complete structure of the Damen Waterbus composite ferry, consisting of hulls, deck and superstructure. The waterbus concept is built around flexibility in configurations which can be changed even when production has already started. To date, this one of these ferries can be seen cruising the waters of Antwerp. 

Dairy robot lever_

This lever is part of used in milking robots and is found at the far end of the arm. Despite its complex shape, it needs to be lightweight and strong enough to support the weight of a cow. Because of these combined complexities, composite materials offer here an ideal solution. 

GRP sea outfall couplings_

GRP couplings are used to assemble HDPE pipe sections into an 11 km long sea outfall pipeline. The pipeline consists of several sections of HDPE pipe with an outer diameter of 1600 mm and a wall thickness of 61 mm. Each pipe section has a length of approximately 550 meter. Solico developed the concept of the GRP couplings to withstand the forces during installation and to provide maintenance and leak free couplings between the HDPE pipe sections during its design life. The result is a coupling that connects the pipe sections without using any metal parts.

Design and engineering of composite products is our core business_

The largest independent composite engineering company in the Benelux.

Our vast experience is the best start for the success of your product.

Independence from production methods and suppliers results in the best design.

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Non-magnetic

The non-magnetic properties of glassfiber reinforced composites are a major advantage especially in sonar and radar applications.

Aesthetics

Slender constructions and seamless façades are examples of aesthetics driven design. These type of structures are impossible to construct with traditional materials.

Cost effectiveness

Though composite materials themselves are slightly more expensive than metals, combining properties such as insulation and weight savings often results in a cost effective product.

High strength

In general, fiber reinforced plastics outperform metals (e.g. steel and aluminium) in strength.

Freedom of geometry

Double curved shapes are easily produced in composite materials at almost no extra cost. For production of limited series the relatively low moulding costs are an additional benefit.

Integration of functions

By combining functions such as strength and insulation in one product, a composite solution is often more cost effective than the sum of traditional solutions.

Insulation

Typical GRP lambda values are 1, compared to 50 for steel and 237 for aluminium, which results in excellent insulation properties.

Chemical/corrosion resistance

Composite materials are resistant to a lot of chemical products such as acids, hydroxides, crude oil, etc. Corrosion resistance against salt and seawater is excellent.

Fatigue

The fatigue resistance of composites is much better than that of metals. Of course fatigue failure also occurs in GRP and CFRP and has to be analysed in detail.

Limited thermal expansion

Thermal expansion of composite materials can be tuned. Depending on the fiber used it can vary between 0 and 30 where steel has an alpha of 12.

Lightweight

The specific weight of composites varies between 1.5 and 2.0 compared to 2.7 to 7.8 for aluminium and steel.

High stiffness to weight ratio

The stiffness to weight ratio of a high modulus carbon fiber construction is typically 5 times higher than steel or aluminium.

Sonar/Radar Transparency

Composites are very well known for their transparency to radar and low damping properties.

Low maintenance

Steel structures typically require periodic maintenance such as conservation and paint systems to prevent corrosion. Composites are not susceptible to corrosion resulting in lower Life-cycle costs.