An increased industry emphasis on fuel efficiency, safety and operator comfort are accelerating the drive for heavy truck OEMs and their tier suppliers to find new solutions.
Sabic’s Innovative Plastics business have highlighted the ways they think material technology, processing technology and design technology can help the heavy truck industry achieve lighter, more sustainable heavy-duty trucks.
The heavy truck industry is poised to recognise meaningful sustainability benefits from the use of lighter materials. We’re excited to tell the story about the ways SABIC’s injection-mouldable engineering thermoplastics can help the industry reach its goals related to fuel economy, system cost savings, sustainability, or to develop a safer, more comfortable cabin for operators, Sabic recently unveiled the first application of PC glazing in rear fixed and roll-down side windows in a production automotive vehicle. We’re eager to help translate best practices and innovative solutions like PC glazing to reduce weight across industries as a resource to help heavy truck OEMs and tiers save development time and costs.
Scott Fallon Senior director Sabic Innovative Plastics
Sabics plan for weight reduction, without compromising safety, include large part moulding as a replacement for traditional thermosets. Thermoplastics are on average 30% lighter than thermosets and because they are injection moulded, there is the potential for the elimination of secondary operations such as painting, with the corollary reduction in volatile organic compounds (VOCs). In addition, thermoplastics are recyclable, whereas thermoset parts are not. A lightweight Volvo VN series roof fairing on display will show enhanced aerodynamics while still meeting performance and structural requirements.
Glass replacement also represents an opportunity for weight reduction. An automotive backlight prototype, featuring Sabic’s Exatec plasma coating system, will show the benefits of this multi-layer system. At its core is Lexan polycarbonate resin, with additional layers of UV protection and Exatec coating, which provides glass-like abrasion resistance. The Exatec system can provide up to 50 percent weight reduction vs. glass, with design freedom that enables unique styling and part integration. Additional potential benefits include increased safety when compared to glass and better thermal management.