Family-owned composites fabricator ACP Composites (Livermore, Calif., U.S.) supports a number of industries with its composite structures, plates, flat panels and other custom applications. One successful application of its sandwich composite panels is a carbon fiber composite patient positioning table designed for healthcare equipment company Broncus Medical Inc. (San Jose, Calif., U.S.).
According to Justin Sparr, CEO of ACP Composites, to meet customer requirements the table needed to be both lightweight and durable, transparent to x-ray radiation, and able to be easily machined to accommodate a specific type of insert for the attachment of medical instruments and clamps. To meet volume and cost requirements, the tables also needed to be produced cost-effectively with short lead times. Carbon fiber was chosen for its low energy absorption and low attenuation — meaning the material, unlike metal, reduces the intensity of the x-ray beams as they hit the surface, rather than scatter the beams and risk unnecessary exposure to the patient. ACP Composites chose Axiom Materials’ (Santa Ana, Calif., U.S.) 3K twill carbon fiber prepreg for use in the sandwich panels.
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