The exciting future of material solutions for the automotive, E&E and additive manufacturing industries was discussed by a panel of DSM industry experts during the Future of Materials session. Panelists were Bert Havenith, strategic and market intelligence director for DSM Engineering Materials; Harold van Melick, R&D director for DSM Additive Manufacturing; Jan-Pedro Vis, global procurement director for DSM Engineering Materials; and Caroline Mitterlehner, global business manager for DSM Engineering Materials. The moderator of the discussion was Joost d’Hooghe, VP of DSM Engineering Materials.
The automotive and E&E industries are merging into one industry, and because of this there is increasing pressure in automotive to innovate faster.
According to Havenith, connectivity and safety will play a bigger role as the automotive industry evolves. There will be more advanced electronic safety systems since cars will eventually drive themselves. “Years ago, on high-end cars you would see entertainment, communication and safety systems, and now these systems are pretty much standard on all cars. Now everything is connected, and in the future, there will be more electronics in car and home systems. We are even seeing this with consumer goods.”
According to van Melick, additive manufacturing opens new opportunities for the automotive industry, and it is getting closer to mass production—soon it will not just be used for prototypes.
“DSM has been using additive manufacturing for about 20-30 years and we are now going towards functional prototyping and mass manufacturing,” said van Melick. “One area we are focusing on is the automotive spare parts industry. If you can make spare parts on demand when needed that can create many opportunities. Customization is another area additive manufacturing can be successfully applied to.”
The electronics industry is also utilizing additive manufacturing. “Additive is great for products with details. Sometimes 3D printing is the only way we can make intricate parts.”
Circulatory and recycling was also discussed during this session. In the automotive industry, circulatory and recycling come with challenges. For example, a car bumper can be taken off and recycled easily, but the deeper you go into a car there are different compounds and multi-material solutions that are tough to recycle.
“Because of this challenge, DSM is moving towards chemical recycling,” said Vis. “After the materials are recycled you have a virgin grade of material with the exact same properties you had before producing the product.”
Other topics discussed during the Advanced Materials Forum included:
- Processing Advanced Materials
- Polymer Innovation
- Reinforced Plastics Durability Prediction
- Creep of Engineering Materials
- High-Voltage Challenges in Automotive
- Improving Electric Vehicle Thermal Management
- Exploring PA66 Alternatives
- Fatigue of Engineering Materials, and more
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