Lightweight solution from LANXESS has been featured in FCV (fuel cell vehicle) ‘Clarity Fuel Cell’, the latest model of hydrogen electric vehicle from Honda Motor, which recently has been introduced in the market.
LANXESS explains that by using Tepex, continuous- and long-fibre reinforced thermoplastic composites with PA 6 matrix from its subsidiary Bond-Laminates, in combination with Durethan, a PA 6 high-tech plastic grade, Honda has introduced the world-first development of hybrid-moulded rear bumper beam in the model using one-shot moulding technology enabled by LANXESS.
“It is our great honour to feature our light weight solution with our Tepex and Durethan in Honda’s latest model of FCV,” said Martin Klocke, Head of Technical Marketing and Business development Tepex Auto in the High Performance Materials business unit at LANXESS about the project.
LANXESS adds that the worldwide automotive industry is facing increasing restrictions on CO2 emissions and therefore automakers actively develop zero emission vehicles such as EV (electric vehicles) and FCV. These trends have been driving the demand for innovative materials and new technologies to make cars lighter. It has been offering lightweight solutions and technologies to the automotive industry which have proven themselves in various applications worldwide. This has resulted in developing a one-shot hybrid moulding process for making large components out of its plastic and glass fibre composite. LANXESS claims the result is approximately 50 percent weight reduction compared to the metal solution and a significant streamlining of the production process.
“With this application, we not only realised the first rear bumper beam made out of Tepex and Durethan material, we also have the first serial automotive production in the Asia Pacific region for our composite material Tepex,” said Deniz Guerkan, Manager Technical Marketing and Business Development Tepex Auto in the High Performance Materials business unit at LANXESS Hong Kong.
In the development, LANXESS says that the materials are uniquely composed in several layers in combination with Tepex dynalite, continuous long glass fibre reinforced thermoplastic composite sheets, and Tepex flowcore, random long glass fibre reinforced composite sheets. This combination enables an easy material flow in the moulding process to fill out complicated part geometry, and a greater mechanical strength with a superior characteristic of dynamic energy absorption in such a critical application as a rear bumper beam.
Through its HiAnt custom-made services for lightweight design, LANXESS explains that it provides automakers and parts suppliers with property testing services. It also supports the development all the way to the mass-production. The series production of the Honda rear bumper beam is done by Takagi Seiko, a leading plastic parts manufacturer in Japan, with advanced plastic moulding technologies. Sunwa Trading, its distributor for Tepex composite sheets in Japan with long experience in composites, further assisted the development process.