NCC and Surface Generation collaborate to demonstrate thermoplastic overmoulding capabilities

15 January 2019.

The National Composites Centre (NCC) is currently supporting Surface Generation (Rutland, UK) in the application of their PtFS technology with a thermoplastic composites injection overmoulding process. Surface Generation and the NCC together have successfully produced a number of carbon reinforced / PA6 automotive demonstrators which are due to be assessed by an automotive OEM. Each manufactured component weighs 1.2 kgs and comprises four continuous carbon fibre reinforced / PA6 composite inserts overmoulded with short carbon fibre PA6. 

The success of this collaboration is a testament to the combination of Surface Generation’s PtFS technology and the performance of the NCC’s Engel Duo 1700T injection overmoulding capability. 

Sean Cooper, Principal Research Engineer for High Volume Manufacturing at the NCC says: “PtFS technology provides a variety of benefits for injection moulding. The ability to keep the average tool temperature higher than usual during the injection phase of the process can reduce the clamping force and injection pressures required for mould filling. The zonal temperature control is exploited to ensure an optimum joint is achieved between the inserts and the overmoulding material. Enhanced thermal control also facilitates manufacturing for variable thickness injection mouldings”

“I am very pleased that the first commercial research activity in composites overmoulding performed here at the NCC, has been supporting Surface Generation in demonstrating the value of their tooling technology. Our work with Surface Generation is exactly what the NCC was set-up to achieve – providing the technology, the technical skills and the innovation environment companies need to accelerate their composites R&D.” 

Alasdair Ryder, Special Projects Engineer at Surface Generation stated: “The NCC’s equipment capability and the proactive support from the High Volume Manufacturing (HVM) team have contributed towards a successful manufacturing campaign. We look forward to returning in 2019 for the manufacture of opposite handed parts as we demonstrate further improvements to our process capability and stability.”

The NCC’s overmoulding equipment and the related facility cost was funded by the Aerospace Technology Institute (ATI) and West of England Combined Authority (WECA).  The NCC overmoulding cell supplied by Engel (Austria) features a horizontal 1700T press, injection barrel temperatures/pressures up to 420 °C and 2000 bar with a shot volume up to 6400 cm3. In addition to the acquisition of the overmoulding cell, the NCC have also invested £690k of its High Value Manufacturing Catapult (HVM Catapult) funding into a capability development project to further apply fundamental research across design, simulation, structural-analysis, manufacturing and physical/mechanical testing of high performance overmoulded structures.


For further information please contact:

Jools Granville, Communications Director, National Composites Centre

T: 0117 244 3905



Notes to Editors

About NCC

The National Composites Centre (NCC) is one of seven centres that form the High Value Manufacturing Catapult and focuses on accelerating the adoption of high-value, sustainable engineering solutions in composites, in order to stimulate growth, and enhance capability for the benefit of the UK.  The NCC has over 350 specialist composites engineers based at its facility and offers open-access to cutting-edge digital manufacturing technology for the design, and development of new composite products pulling through technology from the lab to large-scale production.

For further information about the NCC, visit, call 0117 370 7600 or email

About the NCC Engel Overmoulder

The NCC Engel overmoulder features a horizontal 1700T press, injection barrel temperatures/pressures up to 420 °C and 2000 bar with a shot volume up to 6400 cm3.

About Surface Generation

Surface Generation ( is an advanced materials processing company based in the Midlands, United Kingdom. Its patented ‘Production to Functional Specifications’ (PtFS) process is used to combine, compact, process and meld plastic, glass and composite materials far more efficiently and with much greater precision than is possible using traditional injection and compression moulding processes.  Surface Generation’s technologies are used by component providers and manufacturers across a range of industries, including aerospace, automotive, consumer electronics, defence and leisure.


Contact; Tel;+44-(0)870-0131235 email;



 +44 (0) 117 370 7600