Vitrimers Bridging the Gap between Thermoplastics and Thermosets

The EU project AIRPOXY aims to establish vitrimers as matrix polymers and to reduce the cost of fiber reinforced polymer composites (FRPC) across the product life cycle.

During the project period from 09/2018 to 09/2022, the development of a new family of composites will revolutionize the processing of FRPC. An epoxybased vitrimer resin with dynamic disulfide bonds is used. Vitrimers behave like thermosets right after resin and hardener are combined and can be processed accordingly, e.g. in RTM or prepreg processes. The special feature is that the chemical bonds above the glass transition temperature (Tg = 170°C) can detach and rearrange even after full curing. This mechanism allows, e.g., the rapid production of components by thermoforming, which have the mechanical advantages of thermosets and are also recyclable. In addition to semi-finished products, thermoforming and welding, the repair of vitrimer FRPC is also being investigated at IVW. Other project topics include the processability of vitrimers in the RTM process, process simulations, structural health monitoring and adhesive bonding. Processes from aerospace will be further developed accordingly in order to validate the scalability of the processes from laboratory scale to industrial application.

The associated article in the trade journal "Composites World" is one of the most-viewed articles of 2021 in the magazine:

Top 10 CompositesWorld articles of 2021 | CompositesWorld

Click here for the detailed project report:

Field of competence

Industry sectors

Project status

  • Archived

1:16:37 Präsentation Stefan Weidmann: “3R thermoforming strategies developed in AIRPOXY”



Andreas Krämer

Wiss. Mitarbeiter Press- & Fügetechnologien

Telephone: +49 631 2017 441


This project receives funding from the European Union’s research and innovation program “Horizon 2020“
(funding reference 769274).