Electrical functions for CFRP

In this storyboard, we show you the advantages and possible applications of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP).

The integration of sensors and strain gauges in CFRP structures is used to monitor the condition of lightweight materials (such as aging, cracking, deformation) or as elements to facilitate operation, such as touch functions or non-contact operating elements. 


Additive manufacturing processes are used to integrate electrical functions directly into the manufacturing process of lightweight components. For this purpose, ink formulations adapted to the application are selected, characterized and tested for their process capability. Functions such as heating elements or integrated wiring are designed and applied directly to preliminary stages of the final designs using a suitable printing process. Furthermore, the integrated electrical functions are examined and validated for their formability and resulting stability during the manufacturing process. Via an integrated power supply in CFRP structures, electrical functionalities can be realized, such as:

  • integrated heaters in hydrofoils for the removal of safety-critical icing,
  • lighting systems for vehicles or aircraft,
  • stepper or actuator motors, e.g. adjustment of lighting, mirrors or cameras.  

We are developing further applications for medical and biotechnology (prosthetics)


This project is funded by Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft