In a joint research, German chemical substances firm Henkel and engineering consultancy RLE Worldwide have examined the potential of high-performance structural foam for lightweighting in automotive physique and closure elements. Henkel says the research reveals that fiber-reinforced polymer elements with structural foam ribbing and reinforcements can save greater than 40 kg of weight per automotive in comparison with typical all-metal designs.
The hybrid elements characteristic a strong body or service molded in greater p.c fiber-reinforced polymers (FRP) and selective reinforcements utilizing Henkel’s Teroson EP structural foam, a commercially obtainable epoxy-based materials that delivers excessive power and stiffness at low weight. The froth is injected into the service at predefined sections, expands within the e-coat oven, and creates a stiff connection between the hybrid element and adjoining elements within the body-in-white.
The mission studied all main physique and closure elements of an SUV, from the bumpers, fenders, pillars and doorways to the rocker panel, aspect panels and tailgate.
The crash simulations carried out within the research adhered to worldwide automotive requirements, comparable to offset and small overlap frontal crash testing as specified by the European New Automobile Evaluation Program (Euro NCAP) in addition to the Insurance coverage Institute of Freeway Security (IIHS) at speeds of 64 and 50 km/h, respectively. The aspect crash efficiency was examined in response to US NCAP specs at 32 km/h. The rear affect situation was simulated with a 60 km/h transferring barrier onto a hard and fast check automobile as outlined by US Federal Motor Automobile Security Commonplace No. 301.
RLE and Henckel discovered that the hybrid designs with Henkel’s Teroson EP structural foam handed all these exams properly throughout the limits of deformation and intrusion, whereas on the similar time providing weight financial savings in comparison with typical all-metal designs.
David Caro, Head of World Engineering at Henkel, stated, “The outcomes of our research have confirmed that we are able to obtain vital additional weight reductions with out compromising the protection in typical crash eventualities by optimizing the stiffness of fiber bolstered plastic frames or carriers with selective foam ribbing and reinforcements, with aggressive prices.”