Engineering Materials

DSM in Automotive

Our innovative materials are developed to meet a wide variety of technological challenges in mobility, making (electric) vehicles safer, lighter and more sustainable. Browse these pages to learn more about how our industry experts, scientists and engineers work hand in hand with our customers to develop next generation solutions.

Making electric vehicles Safer, Lighter and More Sustainable

The future of mobility is rapidly changing. The era of internal combustion engines as a single power source is ending, indicating a transformation that makes vehicles cleaner. To realize this transformation, automotive OEMs need advanced materials that make electric vehicles safer, lighter and more sustainable.

Our portfolio of tough yet lightweight materials are driving manufacturers to produce automotive components that are extremely light, reduce friction and operate in extreme environments – particularly at very high temperatures - with drastically smaller carbon footprints. 

Highlighted case studies

SAFER

The EV charging plug with enhanced fire and electrical safety properties required for fast-charging

New suppliers entering the EV market are producing charging plugs using lower quality materials to drive costs down, which puts other manufacturers under pressure to improve cost efficiency. Yet, low quality materials fail to deliver the aesthetic value that OEMs expect today. They are also unsuitable for producing new fast-charging plugs, which process higher voltage rates and require high-strength materials designed to ensure final parts are safe to handle under any conditions.

LIGHTER

The JEC 2020 innovation award-winning lightweight FRP center tunnel for Porsche 718 Boxster/Cayman 

A high-performance automotive center tunnel for a Porsche 718 Boxster/Cayman is manufactured in a multi-material design by the combination of glass and carbon fiber tapes, metal inserts and thermoplastic polymers using a cost efficient injection molding process. The hybrid center tunnel features significant weight savings, low machine and tool invest and highly flexible production for novel automotive body applications. 

MORE SUSTAINABLE

The SPE Automotive 2021 innovation award-winning wire-harness clips for Ford Bronco Sport made of ocean plastics 

Ford uses wiring harness clips made of ocean-harvested plastic “ghost gear” in Bronco Sport models. Invisible to vehicle occupants, the wiring harness clips fasten to the sides of the Bronco Sport second-row seats and guide wires that power various features in the vehicle’s cargo area. Ford testing shows that the Akulon® RePurposed material, despite having spent time in salt water and sunlight, is as strong and durable as petroleum-based clips.

Meeting the challenges of tomorrow

How will you design automotive components that meet the challenges of your industry, today and tomorrow? DSM offers high-performing plastic solutions, technologies and expertise for the extreme demands of next-generation vehicles.

Our materials are a driving force in producing automotive components that are extremely light; that reduce friction in the engine; and can operate in the most extreme heat. On the road to zero emission, it’s time to think differently.  And above all, to think together.

Browse applications in automotive

  • Lightweighting

    Learn more about DSM’s lightweight material solutions to lower weight & cost and maintain optimal driving experiences

  • Gears & Actuation

    Learn why DSM is a leading supplier of advanced thermoplastic material solutions for gears and actuation systems.

  • Hydrogen Fuel Cells

    Fuel cell systems need to use materials that are pure. If not, ion leaching and hydrolytic and heat aging can occur. These two failure modes and the risks and consequences can hurt your brand image. Impure materials increase the risk of ion leaching, and higher water absorbing materials show more ion leaching, which you do not want. Also, impure materials increase the risk of hydrolytic and heat ageing— PA9T and PA66 are not good performers.

  • Thermal management

    Learn how DSM helps manufacturers leverage advanced material science to improve the performance and reliability of automotive thermal management systems.

  • Actuators Used in Steering Systems

    Reducing the weight of electronic power steering systems (EPS) without compromising driver safety has proven a great challenge to the industry. Learn more

  • Drivetrain

    Drivetrain components have to work in very challenging conditions. Stanyl has proven an effective replacement for aluminum in FEAD systems, especially for the tensioner

  • Fuel Systems

    Learn why DSM is a leading global supplier of advanced materials for automotive fuel systems.

  • Exterior

    Our broad portfolio of materials has grades suited to a wide range of exterior applications – for both painted and unpainted parts.

  • Braking

    Learn how DSM helps manufacturers leverage advanced material science to improve the performance and safety of automotive braking systems.

  • Suspension

    The suspension system is essential to ensuring a smooth and enjoyable ride – with reduced noise, vibration and harshness for the driver and passengers.

  • Interior

    Drivers have the most interaction with the interior of the vehicle, making it a key area of focus as automobile manufacturers focus on improving the driving experience.

  • Body & Chassis

    Body plugs, structural reinforcements and chassis made of Akulon polyamide 6 and Arnitel TPC (TPE-E) make better, safer, lighter, and more cost-efficient cars

  • Engine

    Engine components such as timing systems, oil sumps, and bearing cages - engineering plastics reduce friction compared with metals, which gives fuel efficiency.

Further reading

  • Automotive Industries: Legislation will drive technological developments in mobility

    OEMs and Tiers need a new generation of advanced materials as they focus more on producing electric vehicles. Plus, research shows it is important that technology development is informed by consumer preferences. Automotive Industries (AI) asked Tamim Sidiki, Global Marketing Director Mobility, DSM, to share what trends the company’s research has identified.

  • Manufacturing lightweight and cost-effective tanks for hydrogen vehicles

    A long-standing barrier to increasing the adoption of hydrogen vehicles is the weight and cost of their pressurized fuel tanks – which are typically made of steel or aluminium and limit a vehicle’s range and load capacity. As a result, manufacturers are looking to replace metal hydrogen tank materials with engineering thermoplastics that enable them to simplify designs, reduce part weight and lower production costs.

  • Optimizing thermal management systems for EVs with advanced materials

    As automotive brands bring more electric vehicles to market, they need to address the safety issues related to electric engine batteries. These batteries need to operate within a narrow temperature range to optimize energy efficiency and extend the engine’s service life – and risk thermal runaway that can create a fire hazard if they reach temperatures above 65°C.

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