The establishment of the Three-D Composite Research Corporation is an example of major Japanese companies forming a precompetitive joint venture to initiate research and development in an area that is assumed to have significant future market potential. The consortium was established in March 1988 with the aim of developing prefabrication and preforming techniques for 3-D structures in a cost- effective and efficient manner. The companies involved in this venture are Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, Nippon Steel Corporation, Toyoda Automatic Loom Works, Ltd., Mitsubishi Rayon Co., Ltd., and Arisawa Manufacturing Co., Ltd.
The formation of such a venture is all the more remarkable because it is in an area that is highly competitive and all the companies involved had already committed significant resources to in-house development before its formation. The results of the venture have been outstanding, ranging from the development of new equipment and material forms, to the actual demonstration of complex forms, and the determination of mechanical and physical data.