The weight of each gram of parts is particularly critical for electric sports cars.
For this reason, the first mass-produced sports car with all-plastic brake pedals came into being.
This safety component was jointly developed by the High Performance Materials (HPM) business unit of LANXESS and the international supplier BOGE Elastmetall.
The company mainly provides vibration damping systems and plastic components for the automotive industry .
The brake pedal adopts a thermoplastic composite structure to achieve the best mechanical performance while maintaining light weight.
Its structure includes inserts made of LANXESS Tepex dynalite, a continuous fiber-reinforced thermoplastic composite material, with multiple sets of reinforcing ribs.
"The customized fiber structure of Tepex inserts is reinforced with multi-layer moldings.
This composite structure makes the brake pedal 50% lighter than similar steel products and meets higher load requirements.
Automatic operation makes this irregular shape Safety components can be efficiently and mass-produced.
” said Dr.
Klaus Vonberg, a lightweight structure expert at Tepex Automotive Group, the High Performance Materials (HPM) business unit of LANXESS.
The all-plastic brake pedal is used in battery-powered sports cars.
Its structure includes inserts made of LANXESS Tepex dynalite, a continuous fiber-reinforced thermoplastic composite material.
Precise combination of multi-directionally arranged fiber layers
Tepex dynalite is a fully integrated semi-finished product whose thermoplastic matrix material is usually reinforced by multiple layers of continuous glass fibers.
The brake pedal of the electric sports car adopts a polyamide 6 matrix composite structure.
The inner layer of the composite structure is a unidirectional fiber layer, and the outer layer is covered with a multi-layer 45° arranged fiber woven layer.
The inner layer is to achieve high bending and resistance to the pedal.
The key to twist.
Ribs are thin plastic strips composed of unidirectionally arranged high-strength continuous fibers for embedding in a thermoplastic matrix.
The bottom of the brake pedal is reinforced with multi-layer moldings and glass fiber roving.
Since the plastic matrix of the molding is compatible with the Tepex insert, welding can be completed simply by laser, so that this customized fiber laminate can follow a precise load path and adapt to the requirements of specific load components.
The fiber outer covering arranged at 45° of the inserts is combined with the top molding to ensure the high torsional strength of the pedal.
Mass production of four brake pedals
"This customized fiber layer structure, combined with organic sheets and ribs, enables the brake pedal to be expected to further reduce weight while achieving the excellent mechanical properties it needs to achieve," said Dr.
Daniel Häffelin of the BOGE Elastmetall Innovation Center.
Currently, four different designs of all-plastic brake pedals have been put into mass production, and their load paths have been optimized to cope with different twisting directions.
One-time molding molding and Tepex
The brake pedal is manufactured by a one-time hybrid molding process with short cycle time and is suitable for large-scale mass production.
This process integrates the subsequent laminating process of Tepex inserts and ribs.
The first step of production is to accurately calibrate the position of the insert on the Tepex insert with the help of an optical measuring system for welding.
This step is thermoformed, and then reverse injection molded with polyamide 66.
High-strength structural components of electric vehicles
The combination of thermoplastic composite structure and oriented fiber brings new opportunities to the field of electric vehicles.
Vonberg said: "Tepex inserts can be used for front-end brackets and bumpers, electrical and electronic module brackets, luggage compartments and spare wheel wells, battery covers, structural components in the "greenhouse" part of the vehicle, and protective structures for batteries under the body.
Compared with the parts of the metal structure, the low carbon footprint is also one of the reasons for adopting the composite structure of Tepex and molding.
Thermoplastic composites are not only lighter than similar materials, but the hybrid molding process used is also more weight-saving, energy-saving, and cost-saving, because the process integrates guiding, brackets, and fasteners.
The use of thermoplastic composites eliminates the need for time-consuming further processing, such as polishing or subsequent tapping and other conventional steps of metal parts.
(Keyword: plastic car)