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As turbocharging market grows, so does demand for new solutions, materials

7 August 2019
  • Russell BloomfieldGeneral Technical Service Engineer

Materials must meet both fuel efficiency and under the hood space targets

As the automotive landscape continues to evolve, the materials used in vehicles evolve too. Much of the evolution in the industry is focused on fuel efficiency and reducing under the hood space, therefore there is an increased use of turbocharging systems, plus, vehicles are being designed to maximize passenger space, increase pedestrian impact protection and decrease noise related capsulation. New materials are needed to meet both fuel efficiency and under the hood space targets—materials need to have a better chemical resistance, higher peak temperature performance, and long-term heat aging performance at elevated temperatures. 

The below map shows a forecast of vehicles with turbocharge engines in all regions, based on data from IHS databases and Qube Turbochargers Just-Auto report, new materials and solutions will be in high demand. Also, according to Market Watch, analysts have predicted that the automotive industry is about to grow at a very rapid pace, and the global automotive turbocharge market is expected to reach $24,223.3 million by 2023 with 7.97% compound annual growth rate.

Turbocharging: market share 2021 forecast


The evolving turbocharge engine

There are two types of turbocharge systems—supercharger and turbocharger. For turbocharged systems air-to air cooling (direct) or liquid-to-air cooling (indirect) can be used. The latter being the latest development to integrate the charge air cooler (CAC) into the air intake manifold (AIM), using liquid instead of air to effectively cool the air.

Integrating the CAC into the AIM reduces the length of pipe previously needed to reach the air-to-air cooler in the front of the vehicle—this leads to an increase in engine responsiveness. This drives up the temperature in the AIM (currently up to 230°C) and the mechanical requirements for the materials used. For auto manufacturers, this gives them the ability to deliver higher performing engines while meeting emission limits.

In cases where package space, design, or cost preclude the ability to integrate the CAC into the AIM, liquid-to-air cooling can still be implemented by mounting the CAC directly onto the engine, as a standalone component, and in close proximity to the AIM.

Impacts of liquid-to-air cooling

Moving from air-to-air cooling to liquid-to-air cooling will impact geometry and part requirements for ducts, by whom/when the ducts are designed and in what fashion the ducts are secured to mating components. Also, manufacturers will want to find materials that will enable weight reduction via metal and rubber replacement, increased engine efficiency, emission reduction, noise reduction, a higher safety level, plus, a system cost reduction.

There is a technology specifically invented for elevated continuous-use temperatures of 180-230°C—a material that offers long-term heat ageing performance at elevated temperatures, higher peak temperature and performance and better chemical resistance. Diablo technology, invented and patented by DSM, improves the long-term temperature resistance of materials such as Stanyl PA46 and Akulon PA66.

Compared to first generation Diablo offerings, Stanyl Diablo HDT2700 has an improved Heat Deflection Temperature (HDT), which is an indicator of peak temperature capability. Stanyl Diablo HDT2700 also offers best-in-class weld strength and ensures part integrity under pressure pulsation loads. It maintains high stiffness, even while exposed to continuous-use temperatures up to 230°C tested up to 3,000 hours.

There are also new Akulon Diablo materials—Akulon Diablo HDT2505 BM and Akulon Diablo HDT2504 BM. Both offer best-in-class heat aging performance that covers a wide temperature spectrum, impressive strength that enables thinner wall and part mass reduction, and a robust processability to help ensure a low scrap operation.

To learn more about Akulon Diablo or Stanyl Diablo, or to request test samples, contact us or visit plasticsfinder.com for additional information, including technical data sheets.

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