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Lanxess makes Honda’s zero emission electric vehicle lighter

News International-French

20 Apr 2016

Lightweight solution from German specialty chemicals company Lanxess has been featured in FCV (fuel cell vehicle) “Clarity Fuel Cell”, the latest model of hydrogen electric vehicle from Honda Motor Co., which has been introduced in the market.

Using Tepex, continuous and long-fiber reinforced thermoplastic composites with PA 6 matrix from Lanxess subsidiary Bond-Laminates, in combination with Durethan, a PA 6 high-tech plastic grade from Lanxess, Honda has introduced the development of hybrid-molded rear bumper beam in the model using one-shot molding technology enabled by Lanxess.

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. The company 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 molding process for making large components out of its plastic and glass fiber composite. The result is approximately 50 percent weight reduction compared to the metal solution and a significant streamlining of the production process.

Expertise in lightweight design to support development of components
In the development, the materials are composed in several layers in combination with Tepex dynalite, continuous long glass fiber reinforced thermoplastic composite sheets, and Tepex flowcore, random long glass fiber reinforced composite sheets. This combination enables an easy material flow in the molding 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 provides automakers and parts suppliers with property testing services. The company 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 Co., a leading plastic parts manufacturer in Japan, with advanced plastic molding technologies. Sunwa Trading, Lanxess’ distributor for Tepex composite sheets in Japan with long experience in composites, further assisted the development process.

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