Mass-production CFRP springs for railcar trucks

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  • Toho Tenax to provide integrated system from carbon fiber’s original yarn to actual CFRP leaf springs
  • Truck frame’s weight reduced by 900kg per railcar

Toho Tenax Co., Ltd., the core company of the Teijin Group’s carbon fibers and composites business, has agreed with Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. to jointly develop a carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) leaf spring that can be mass-produced for railcar trucks . The leaf spring was initially developed in 2013 and is already used in Kawasaki’s new-generation railcar truck, the efWING.

efWING: Kawasaki's new-generation railcar truck

efWING: Kawasaki’s new-generation railcar truck

Integrated system from carbon fiber’s original yarn to actual CFRP leaf springs

Toho Tenax will help establish an integrated system encompassing everything from the carbon fiber’s original yarn to the actual CFRP leaf springs. The new mass-production system will enable the efWING to be marketed on a global scale.

CFRP leaf springs

CFRP leaf springs as used in railcar trucks

Truck frame’s weight reduced by 900kg per railcar

Conventional railcar trucks use side frames and independent coil springs made of steel, but the efWING is the world’s first to combine these components in a simplified solution made of CFRP. The lighter materials and simplified design help to reduce the truck frame’s weight by some 900kg per railcar. Benefits include more efficient running costs and lower CO2 emissions, as well as the reduction in the risk of wheel derailment.



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