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Products found

Press Releases

KAPA®TECH – Absolutely new on the market from 3A COMPOSITES

04.02.2015

KAPA®tech is an innovative composite panel consisting of a polyurethane foam core and lacquered aluminium skins. To date, there is no other product on the market to compare with it.

The aluminium strips for KAPA®tech are coated with high-grade lacquer on a coil coating line at the 3A Composites site in Singen and then sent on to the Osnabrück plant where bonding to KAPA® foam takes place. The controlled foaming of the PUR foam between the skins, used in the manufacture of KAPA®, makes it a unique technology world-wide. This foam has only ever been combined with paper-based cover sheets in the past. Modifying the process to aluminium skins was a great challenge as the aluminium coils are not only much heavier than a roll of paper but also stiffer and less flexible. Standard tools had been designed for trimming and cutting paper to size rather than aluminium, so manufacturing KAPA®tech meant adapting to a completely new set of requirements and properties. Both machinery and production processes had to be altered before KAPA®tech, with protective film on both surfaces in two thicknesses and two standard formats (5mm and 10mm thicknesses, standard formats 1250 x 2500 and 1250 x 3050) could be made available.

What is it that makes this product unique?

The combination of the PUR foam core and the aluminium skins creates an extremely light (1.9 kg/m² in 10mm thickness) yet very rigid panel. The lacquered surface is durable and corrosion resistant, the KAPA®-foam does not absorb water. This means KAPA®tech is waterproof and weather resistant and the first KAPA® panel suitable for exterior use or for applications in humid environments.

What is more, thanks to the innovative PUR-foam formula, KAPA®tech is classed in a high European Fire Test Classification (B-s2-d0), France (M1) and England (0), and its application in public spaces such as shopping centres and trade exhibitions is practically without restriction. In the field of transport and industry, KAPA®tech has been awarded an excellent European fire classification (HL 1-3) for use in rail vehicles.

In addition, KAPA®tech is an outstanding digital printing substrate due to its polyester lacquer and smooth surface. It even won the EDP Award for the best rigid printing substrate at this year’s FESPA in Munich. This annual award has been presented since 2006 by the European Digital Press, an association of specialist journals from all over Europe focussing on the field of digital printing. The prize is for outstanding and innovative new products in the field of printing technology, and KAPA®tech is now an award holder, too.

Processing

Standard wood and metal processing machinery can also be used to process KAPA®tech, and it can also be folded easily.  KAPA®tech achieves great results both in printing and in lamination. Laminating KAPA®tech, for example with HPL, creates an exceedingly robust surface with high point loading capacity which opens up a wide range of other applications.

Application options

KAPA®tech made its debut in London at FESPA 2013. Autumn 2013 saw the completion of the very first projects at home and abroad, for instance, the Russian supermarket chain Selgros. Panels featuring large-format printing were mounted on all the walls above the shelving to act as a decorative product guide for customers. In this case, the main reason for selecting KAPA®tech was because of its lightweight.

KAPA®tech was seen again in February 2014 at Euroshop in Düsseldorf where it was used to create an extremely interesting ceiling construction for the company LK AG. KAPA®tech was the company’s first choice due to its very smooth, white surface, because its fire classification makes it suitable for use at exhibitions and because it is easy to process and glue.

KAPA®tech features not just at one but at two 3A Composites exhibitions in September 2014: seating areas at VISCOM Paris will have a suspended ceiling made from printed KAPA®tech, and a proto-type air conditioning duct for rail vehicles will be presented at Innotrans in Berlin.

All in all, KAPA®tech offers a wide range of applications and processing options in transport and industry as well as in the field of visual communication.