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. 

Madurodam - Defeat the Waterwolf_

The live size pumping station in Madurodam is a replica of the Cruquius pumping station, used in the Netherlands to drain lakes and reclaim land. This replica has 6m long 'cast-iron' look glass fiber reinforced composite arms that move the pumps. Also the crenellation (Dutch: kantelen) is made of composite materials. Solico provided the strength assesment and structural verification for both. Production was realised by Nedcam. 

GRP Cooling Towers_

Solico engineered and delivered the construction as well as the workshop drawings for several GRP cooling towers all over the world e.g. in Germany, The Netherlands, Spain, Australia, Kazakhstan, Belgium, etc... The choice of composite material for producing these towers is straightforward as composite material provides chemical and corrosion resistance and requires minimal maintenance over time. 

Design and engineering of composite products is our core business_

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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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

Lightweight

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

Aesthetics

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

Non-magnetic

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

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.

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.

Insulation

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

Sonar/Radar Transparency

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

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.