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2.

2 Concise reference to materials of interest for CCBs

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more moulding difficulties. In the end, low cost has not been achieved, making both OEMs and
moulders unhappy. . . ..
The subject of CCBs is again taken by the Reinforced Plastics journal (Sept.-Oct. 2011),
[50], noting that Ashland Performance Materials Aropol PET-based resins are applicable for
structural, non Class A SMC components such as reinforced panels, cross car beams and
grille opening retainers that require high mechanical and impact properties and fast cure.
Stewart, 2003, mentions a Bayer Automotive Plastics hybrid plastic metal technology of
interest for instrument panels, CCBs and steering column supports. The Reinforced Plastics
journal (Jan. 1997), [38], mentions an Alpha/Owens Corning structural SMC resin that can
be thickened without sacrificing mechanical strength and heat resistance is suitable for use
in applications including radiator supports, fuel tank heat shields, and cross car beams.

2.2.7

Composites

Fiber reinforcements are used to increase the modulus of polymers, as in glass-fiber reinforced polymer (GFRP) and advanced carbon fiber reinforced polymers (CFRP). Polymeric
composites are divided in two groups, [43]:
Structural composites (structural-GFRP and structural-CFRP) in which glass or carbon
fibers are uniaxially orientated to provide unidirectional strength/ stiffness for structural applications.
Exterior composites (exterior-GFRP and exterior-CFRP) in which glass or carbon fibers
are appropriately aligned to provide quasi-isotropic strength/ stiffness in planar directions but not in the thickness direction, for exterior panel applications.
Luo, [43], mentions the important problem of creep associated with polymeric materials.
Thermoplastics are discussed in Mallick, [20], remarking firstly their recyclability.
Maruthayppan, [51], studied several structural components, including a CCB, and conclude that a thermoplastic composite system can be expected to absorb more energy in critical
areas, compared to a conventional steel cross-car beam system. Further study for additional
crash information should be performed, as well as comparative analysis with injection- molded
structures.
Thermosets are discussed in Mallick, [20], noting their inability for reuse or recycling.
A SRIM (structural reaction injection moulding) composite CCB is discussed by Kendall,
[52]. That paper concludes that functional advantages offered by the composite component
over the traditional steel component include 50% weight savings, improved NVH performance, part count reduction and ease in vehicle assembly. The major disadvantage of the
composite component was increased manufacturing cost, particularly the variable cost, when
compared with the steel component.