Automotive - new composites conceptsFirst customer prototype demonstrating the new Ultracom package: Rear seatback from Johnson Controls
Following the introduction of its new Ultracom product and service concept in June 2013, BASF is now able to present the first prototype composite part demonstrating this service package at the Composites Europe fair: The seatback developed for automobile rear seats by Johnson Controls Automotive Seating together with BASF is based on Ultralaminate, one of the new continuous fiber-reinforced thermoplastic woven fabrics that is overmolded with Ultramid ZG7 COM, a specially formulated, high-impact modified polyamide 6. During development, the extensive simulation know-how of BASF was provided as part of the Ultracom package. Compared to the current metal version, the complex composite part provides weight savings of more than 30 percent.
CIFO part: Material, process and component development
In addition, the new CIFO part, its name being derived from Combination of Inmold-Forming and Overmolding, will be displayed at Composites Europe as well. It was developed by BASF to fully exploit all possibilities of composite part design with Ultracom in its new manufacturing cell. The multifunctional test part for investigating continuous fiber-reinforced composite component with regard to volume production consists of a 1.5-mm-thick formed laminate and up to 3-mm-thick molded-on functional elements such as ribs and edges. Using this part, with its approximately 20 individual functionalities, it is possible to demonstrate the characteristics of composite part manufacturing. Special features of the component include sealing the edges, long flow paths, formed holes, a rib array, multiply molded-through elements as well as a ribbed U-profile beam.
RTM epoxy fender prototype
In addition to polyamide, the multi-material Lightweight Composite Team at BASF is also developing continuous fiber-reinforced composite concepts based on polyurethane and epoxy resin systems for structural and semi-structural applications. The company is exhibiting its new Baxxodur System 2202 epoxy resin, developed specifically for high-pressure RTM (Resin Transfer Molding), in the form of a carbon fiber-reinforced fender demonstrator. The epoxy resin system cures at 120°C with a demolding time of only 2.5 min, exhibits good mechanical properties and has a wide processing window.