A Capel Hendre-based advanced materials company has received a research grant for a sports car project.

The research and development grant from the Niche Vehicle Network has been awarded to Haydale to develop graphene-enhanced composite tooling, and graphene-enhanced automotive body panels.

A grant of £249,600, of which Haydale will receive £120,000, has been awarded to the consortium that Haydale leads, joined by Briggs Automotive Company (BAC) and Pentaxia.

BAC is a British manufacturer of the Mono, the world's only road-legal, single seat super car. Pentaxia is specialist in tooling design, machining and composite production.

Through development in this core strategic area, Haydale is looking to reduce cycle times compared to existing tooling methods, as well as reduce weight and increase performance of component material.

The company has granted patents for its technologies in Europe, USA, Australia, Japan and China and operates from six sites in the UK, USA and the Far East and is able to deliver improvements in electrical, thermal and mechanical properties, as well as toughness and

Through selecting, processing and supplying bespoke nano and other advanced materials, Haydale are developing “additives” that will enhance the quality and performance of applications and products across multiple industries.

Keith Broadbent, chief operating officer at Haydale, said: "This funding will build on the significant developments already made by Haydale in advanced prepreg (pre-impregnated) materials.

"The novel prepreg will be of significant interest to niche vehicle manufacturers and the premium and luxury automotive sectors, with BAC as a ready-made customer."

Ray Gibbs, president for business development at Haydale, said: "This collaboration will ensure major advancements in composite tooling resulting in a prepreg material that is ready for market launch.

"We know that production throughput is a major issue in the Carbon Fibre composite market and this initiative can ease the bottleneck. We will look to work with licensees to develop a route for full rate production and commercialisation."