Bio-based structural/aesthetic car components

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This test case aims at replacing actual car side pillars with biomaterial components (2K-IM) made with PMMA (aesthetical part: gloss effect) and ABS (structural part) with biobased polymers.

  • From oil-based and non-recyclable to bio-based and biodegradable (under specific conditions) side pillars.
  • Improvement of the side pillars recyclability.

Facts and Figures

  • Create Prototypes
  • Chemical evaluation of silanized microfibers, a new additional step to improve fiber purity: wringing process
  • Production of several kg-batches of silanized flax and hemp fibers for composite production 
  • Comparison of the mixing processes: better results for Vicat Softening temperature with twin-screw extrusion due to the higher residence time with the elongation mixer that can deteriorate sensitive materials.
  • Porosity of the compounds increased with the fiber amount.
  • Hemp fibres treated with aminosilane were selected because the mechanical properties of PLA filled with them were the best.
  • To achieve a Vicat> 100°C, the PLLA matrix was filled with 25 wt% of hemp fibres.
  • 0.5wt% of carbon black was added to the compound in order to blacken the parts. In addition, this pigment enables reducing the rigidity of the composite.
  • The injected composites were not sufficiently glossy due to surface roughness, even after adding TiO2 and ZnCu. Thus, the coating developed by the Fraunhofer Institute is an absolute necessity.
  • New trials with PHBV from Polymaris without fibre were initiated to resolve the thermal resistance problem encountered by Maier. These final parts cannot be used as car exterior parts, but possibly as car interior parts due to the hydrolysis ability of PHBV.

Related pilot lines

Establishing of a development environment for bio-based particle foams

The Fraunhofer ICT particle foaming pilot line will enable a fully controlled development/ production environment for particle foams tailored to the needs of the respective customers with nano-scaled additives incorporation to (bio)polymers to increase functionality.

What we want to achieve:
  • Product ideas that exist in companies can be turned into products much faster with the help of the new and improved pilot line, which increases the innovation rate of companies in the bio sector.
  • Shorter development cycles and integrated real-time characterisation methods enable a better understanding of the material-property relationship for a new material.
Download pilot line pdf

Compounding and processing of nano-enabled bio-materials

The Extensional Flow Mixer METEOR (patented by IPC) is used to develop new formulations with an efficient dispersion of additives while reducing the overheating, and so the thermal degradation of sensitive material, like PLA.

What we want to achieve:
  • A quality control will be integrated thanks to an inline capillary rheometer to be able to optimize compounding parameters. Control compounding parameters for zero material degradation and optimize distribution of the micro and nano-fillers.
  • Inline integration of 3D printing filament at 2 diameters 1.75 and 2.85 mm. Additionally, a flexible cooling system will be implemented with water or air for water-sensitive materials.
Download pilot line pdf

Increasing the production of bio-based nano composites

Melt blending processes as the key to efficient production of bio-based compounds of nano composites.

What we want to achieve:
  • We will be able to support SMEs and companies interested in the development of nanocomposites with no experience in nanomaterials handling at the industrial scale, from the materials fine-tuning (few kg) up to pilot scale (50 kg) for materials qualification, without any preliminary nanosafety investment in their plants.
  • Also, industrials interested in printed electronics from nano-enabled materials, will find a unique environment which will allow them to deal with the nano-safety issue during the development of new materials, up to development of 2D substrates for preliminary printing test, in coordination with the CEA-PICTIC pilot line.
Download pilot line pdf