Employing natural plant based fiber in interior automotive parts for cost & weight benefit
To be published on November 21, 2019 by SAE International in United States
Event: NuGen Summit
The Automotive industry is in ever more need for a lesser weight car due to progressively stringent emission norms and the demand of customer to have better mileage. It can be a gargantuan challenge for automotive manufacturers to search for lesser weight material to meet both customers as well as regulatory norms. But in some cases such lower weight material can increase the cost and adding a expensive material which increases overall cost to a price sensitive market like India is not favorable. One such solution is using the indigenous plant fiber (Jute) in combination with propylene (PP) to make Interior plastics components. Jute a vegetable fiber also referred to as "the golden fiber" has high tensile strength, low extensibility and is well established in fabric, packing, agriculture, construction industries. The biodegradable Jute lesser weight & abundance (India is the leading manufacturer of the Jute) can be utilized in making automobile trim parts in India. Through this paper we will have insight of the natural fiber based plastic components the benefits (lesser weight, Less GSM /Part) and overcoming its shortcomings (Processing, Odor, VOC and Fogging). And in-depth analysis of the benefit gained from changing the weight of conventional Woodstock interior plastic part to a Jute+PP based material. An overall weight reduction of 300~500grams can be achieved.( 20~30% weight reduction) and since lesser GSM will be use lead to lesser cost of the final product. (25% ↓).