Carbon fiber consists of extremely thin fibers ranging from 0.005 to 0.010 mm in diameter. First thousands of carbon fibers are twisted together to form yarn. This yarn is then weaved into carbon fiber cloth.
Carbon fiber cloth has many different weave patterns and when combined with a resin it can be molded to form a high strength-to-weight ratio composite material.
Carbon fiber is very lightweight and has considerably lower density than steel (about 80% less), making it ideal for aerospace, military, and motorsports racing.
The Ford GT 500 Cobra shown in the picture has carbon fiber skirting and there are other GT 500 cars available with carbon fiber hoods and other body parts. This is just part of the trend towards carbon fiber in performance cars. The lighter weight combined with the high strength of carbon fiber makes it the perfect material for car hoods, car body parts and other components. The Corvette also has a carbon fiber hood, front quarter panels and more. Carbon fiber hoods and other components can significantly reduce the weight of a car. Since acceleration equals force divided mass, you can increase the acceleration proportional to the decrease in weight. In basic terms if you were able to reduce the weight of a vehicle by 50%, then you would get a 100% increase in acceleration!!
The photo above shows the size of a carbon fiber next to a human hair - the carbon fiber is the smaller one. Talk about some fine fibers! The small diameter of the fibers combined with the number of fibers helps give it the extra strength and keep it flexible. It is the same concept a rope is based on. Typically a rope has small fibers wound into small bundles that are in turn wound into rope. This keep the rope strong, flexible and also more secure because if a single thread fails it does not matter. If the rope was all one piece it would be hard to bend and could easily crack. Just a little crack could propagate through the remaining material causing failure. The power of thousands of small individual threads is undeniable and our carbon fiber products not only make use of these properties, but they look great doing it!
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