Material Differences

Although the two booms looked the same, they were not. The first clue that they might be different was their location. Fitted up side by side across a broad wooden platform, the Hoyt jib booms were part of the Future Materials display at the 2015 International BoatBuilders’ Exhibition & Conference, held in September in Louisville, Kentucky. The second, more obvious clue was when they started to shake. After a couple seconds one was still vibrating while the other was still.

You can see this demonstrated in the above video, taken at the show. While the boom on the right is all carbon fiber, the one on the left contains a material called Countervail, explained Tony Caiazzo, of Materials Sciences Corporation.

“It’s a couple extra plies that you put into strategic areas of the structure,” said Caiazzo. “It allows you to dampen out a good portion of the vibration.”

Countervail was one of the featured future materials in the display that the editors of CompositesWorld and Professional BoatBuilder pulled from the aerospace, automotive, and marine industries, as well as from academic research and development. They’re not part of mainstream boatbuilding yet, but that was the point: to show what composites materials and processes could come in handy for the marine industry someday.

Whether that’s far off or in the near future varied among materials, but walking around the exhibit it seemed likely that some would quickly prove practical by improving infusion efficiency and cutting down on the waste of materials. For example, the glass fabric flow media from Chomarat, show in the video below, does both by providing structural properties to an infused product.

To see more videos of future materials and processes, scroll below for a tour through the display with Ginger Gardiner, senior editor of CompositesWorld, and Aaron Porter, editor of Professional BoatBuilder. Those featured include infusion innovations from German Advanced Composites, recycled carbon fiber from Carbon Conversions, and Elium, a recyclable, thermoformable resin that Gardiner calls, “amazing.”

You can also view the full lineup on the IBEX website and plan to visit the next display of future materials at IBEX’s 2016 show, to be held in Tampa, Florida, October 4–6.

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