Carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CRP) or carbon fiber reinforced polymer (CFRP) or carbon fiber reinforced thermoplastic (CFRTP) or is a very strong and light fiber-reinforced plastic. The binding polymer used with CRP is usually a thermoset resin like epoxy, but other thermoplastic or thermoset polymers like vinyl ester, polyester, nylon etc are also used sometimes. Additives such as carbon nanotubes, rubber, and silica are often introduced to the binding resin. It can be very expensive to produce and is used only in cases where high rigidity and high strength-to-weight ratio is required such as civil engineering, automotive, aerospace, sports goods etc.
· Aerospace engineering- The Airbus A350 XWB is made up of built of 52% CRP including fuselage components and wing spars. The Boeing 787 Dreamliner is made of 50% CRP. The Airbus A380’s central wing-box made of CFRP; SpaceX is using CRP for ITS launch vehicle, the ITS tanker and the Interplanetary Spaceship. Specialist aircraft manufacturers and designers have extensively used CRP for the first private manned spacecraft named Spaceship One. CRP is also used widely in micro air vehicles (MAVs) due to its high strength to weight ratio. Ultralight aircraft (SSDR) like the E-Go use CRP extensively to meet its weight compliance category.
- Automotive engineering- CRP is used extensively in high end racing cars. It strength and low weight is required for high performance of the cars
- Sports goods- hockey sticks, surf boards, badminton, squash, tennis rackets, bicycle frames, basket ball sneakers etc.
Other applications like laptop cases, PickHeaven Guitar Picks, audio devices like loudspeakers and turntables, kite systems, firearms, helicopter rote blades, radio controlled vehicles, musical instruments like drum shells, violin bows, Luis and Clark's carbon fiber cellos, bagpipe chanters, ukuleles, railed train bogies, dental fiber posts, poles for high reach, tents, tripod legs, fishing rods, walking sticks etc.