TECHNICAL: Visa RB set to manufacture components from recycled carbon fibre

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For this weekend's Emilia-Romagna Grand Prix, the Visa RB outfit will introduce a technical innovation as the front wing flaps of their cars have been manufactured using moulds produced from recycled carbon fibre.

Ahead of this weekend's Imola F1 round, the Visa RB team has announced a new partnership with a company called Herambiente. This company is currently constructing an innovative plant near Imola which will be able to give carbon fibre a second life.

Once this partnership is fully up and running, up to the equivalent of 150 tons of CO2 can be saved per year, a saving equal to planting 4000 trees. The aim is to crate "an ever more sustainable race car using recycled and regenerated carbon fibre inside the manufacturing procedures."

As a first step, the front wing flaps on the VCARB01 cars raced by Yuki Tsunoda and Daniel Ricciardo in Imola been manufactured using moulds produced from recycled carbon fibre.

Formula One team use carbon fibre not only for the components of their car, but also for the manufacturing processes. Generally, around 50% of the carbon fibre purchased during the year is used to produce moulds and tools for laminating car components. The team noted that the recycling can be achieved without endangering the performance and quality of the components.

The used carbon fibre first goes through the process of pyro-gassification and processing for the production of prepreg. Following this work, the fibrereturns to the Visa RB's Faenza-based factory where the team produced the mould for components of its VCARB01. According to the team's estimation, these use 85% recycled carbon fibre, leading to an 83% reduction in emissions.

Speaking of the project, Enrico Fastelli, who is responsible for the team's facility management, said: β€œThe carbon fibre recycling project developed by Herambiente is a perfect fit with the aims of VCARB and the Red Bull GmbH group aimed at reducing CO2 emissions in the Formula 1 World Championship.

"The promotion of the circular economy and local projects, along with the development of new technologies that make motorsport increasingly sustainable and respectful towards the environment, are all part of a raft of activities that VCARB is approaching with a holistic vision aimed at grasping every opportunity to tackle the global challenge of climate change.”

The CEO of Herambiente, Andrea Ramonda commented: β€œThe partnership with Visa Cash App RB is totally in line with our aims of decarbonisation and development of a circular economy.

"It has a strategic value with a view to promoting short and circular chains in Italy (reshoring) and the rest of Europe. Regenerating carbon fibre is a pioneering project which requires good teamwork, with each partner bringing its resources and skills, with the common goal of generating environmental, economic and social benefits.”