Military and commercial aircraft are increasingly turning to high-temperature polymer composites for structural and propulsion systems. In this competitive chemical industry, the bonding of resins and business relationships are integral to successful innovation. Renegade Materials co-founders, Laura Gray and Susan Robitalle, are proof of this formula.
As a global leader in manufacturing composite materials for aerospace, Renegade is the world's largest supplier of safe, non toxic polyimide prepreg materials for high temperature service. Prepreg, or pre-impregnated materials, are composite fibres where a compound, like epoxy is already present. The development and manufacturing of these materials are performed at Renegade’s state of art production facility in Miamisburg, Ohio.
“We came up with the name Renegade, using the definition ‘opposition to establishment’,” said Laura Gray, General Manager and Co-Founder. “After spending our careers working for, and competing with, companies that practice really poor customer-service, we were determined to run our business a different way,” she added. Gray and her colleagues are committed to providing superior customer service and technical support to achieve customer satisfaction. “A lot of companies say it, but we live it, ”said Gray.
The Renegade team has a deep background on high performance materials. Susan Robitaille, Technical Director and Co-Founder, holds several patents on the development of low energy curing epoxy resins and composite repair. She has worked in a wide variety of manufacturing processes used in aerospace, defense and racing yacht industries. Robitalle previously traveled with the America’s Cup regatta, fine tuning the racing composite materials for a faster performance.
Currently, Renegade’s composite products are known for reducing aircraft fuel costs - saving a 737-sized aircraft as much as $2.5 million in fuel costs per year. The high temperature prepregs made by Renegade, use a polyimide resin technology from the Maverick Corporation. The MVK-14 FreeForm is a low cost resin patented by Maverick. Renegade Materials is the exclusive supplier of prepregs made with MVK-14.
The working relationship between these companies is symbiotic, and they share common characteristics. Like the ‘Unbridled Innovation’ that happens in the Renegade offices, the Maverick Corporation motto is ‘where innovation runs wild.’ Gray, who is married to a staffer at Maverick says “they are committed to innovation, and won’t be “branded like cattle.” Both teams have forged a strong presence for themselves outside the paddock of the traditional polymer composite industry.
Their success caught the eye of former competitor Kory Abbitt , who is now Director of Business Development at Renegade. Abbitt’s quick wit and industry knowledge enhance her explanations of the technical details involved in the complicated composite technologies. To hear from them first-hand, Renegade Materials will be exhibiting at the Farnborough International Air Show in England, July 9-15, 2012.
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