The world’s first carbon fiber smartphone, developed in Germany

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A smartphone that sets new standards for lightness, slim design and sustainability is making its debut on the market soon: the Carbon 1 MK II from Berlin-based start-up Carbon Mobile. “Designed and engineered in Germany, the Carbon 1 MK II reignites miniaturization and drives sustainability in connected devices by replacing plastics and aluminum with advanced composite materials for the first time”, says Mr Firas Khalifeh, CEO of Carbon Mobile. The base material for the production of the housing is a thermoplastic composite from the LANXESS Tepex dynalite product range. It is reinforced with fabrics of incredibly fine 1K continuous carbon fiber filaments. “Our composite material, which we developed for extremely lightweight components subjected to considerable mechanical stress, does more than just allow exceptionally thin wall thicknesses. In fact, with its high degree of strength and rigidity, it also helps to make the housing very robust for day-to-day use,” explains Mr Philipp Genders, Tepex expert in application development at LANXESS. “In addition, the matte-black carbon-fibers give the smartphone a truly high-tech look.”

Following four years of research and development, Carbon Mobile’s engineers have developed a revolutionary process to unlock carbon fiber’s potential for connected devices. The patented HyRECM (Hybrid Radio Enabled Composite Material) technology fuses carbon fibers together with a complementary composite material capable of RF signal permeation. To further boost the devices connectivity, a unique 3D-printed conductive ink is integrated into the carbon fiber structure. The result is the first “radio enabled” carbon fiber based material. Applied for the first time in the Carbon 1 MK II, the new technology produces a robust carbon fiber-based housing structure that is not only incredibly thin and light, but also made from less than five percent plastic.

Mr Eric Chan from processing partner Modern Composites Ltd, said, “LANXESS and their Tepex materials made the perfect partner in the development of HyRECM Technology. Being able to work with a superior material from Germany ensures the best application possible of this revolutionary technology from launch.”