A family of polyamide-based UD tapes with endless carbon or glass fiber reinforcements are light weight alternatives to metals in several automotive applications. UD tapes, tape-based 2D fabrics, and cross plies are used in structural and semi-structural applications, and in the selective reinforcement of injection molded parts.
Extreme light weighting of automobiles is one of the most efficient technologies for reducing emissions and improving mileage, and over the last several years, DSM conducted pilot-scale projects in automotive applications to determine the nature of metal substitution and the optimum cost-to-benefit ratios. The projects showed that decreasing vehicle weight is not just an issue of replacing metal with composites but focuses on utilizing multiple materials to lower automobile curb weight. Carbon fiber reinforced polymers, often referred to as UD tapes, are essential in this approach.
Akulon, EcoPaXX & ForTii UD tapes based composites are viable lightweight alternatives to metals. These polyamide-based UD tapes with endless carbon or glass fiber reinforcements are utilized in automotive interior and exterior applications. Since polyamide polymers are the mainstay of engineering polymers, the DSM portfolio is well suited to automotive applications. UD tapes allow design latitude over other forms and thickness variability across panels with multiple fiber orientations. The matrix polyamide polymer selection is based on surrounding issues of moisture-sensitivity, continuous operating temperatures, resistance to road-salts, battery-acids, hydrogen-permeability, etc. DSM partners with customers along the total value chain. From raw materials to finished products.