Cork Composite materials for thermal insulation & ablation, flexible & lightweight


Fairing shell with Amorim ablative thermal cork composite

Technology abstract

A Portuguese company with main production facility within the country, and exporting products to over 90 countries in different industries has developed a cork composite thermal and flexible material with low freezing temperature capacity. It can be used, for instance, in LNG transport, allowing for a competitive and ease of assembly, therefore we aim to access relevant stakeholders in that field for future sales.

Technology Description

Cork composites are used where lightweight, thermal insulation and damping/acoustic management is needed, the ability to agglomerate cork with a number of different binders such as polyurethane, Phenolic, PVC, rubbers and others allows to customize specific parameters of the final product, which ultimately is a combination of both. Cork composites can be manufactured in sheets as well as rolls. Currently a Cork Phenolic composite is used in aerospace applications for thermal insulation and ablation in rockets and launchers.

Innovations & Advantages

The ability to serve as a thermal insulator that is not affected by humidity due to corks Suberin rich constitution and though compressible has the ability of holding its shape and dimensions on the contrary to most thermal materials that are soft and extremely compressible. The air filled closed cork cell maintains the materials thermal insulation from -80ºC to 180ºC within a very narrow range. Cork composites besides a “green” sustainable product it has been contributing to the circular economy since its existence.

Current and Potential Domains of Application

Aerospace – Currently used in Launcher and Rockets thermal insulation and ablation
Defense – potential use
Shipping - LNG Transport vessels and containers