For Covestro, the VDI congress “Plastics in Automotive Engineering”, which will be offered this year on 28 and 29 July as a digital event, is all about future mobility: trends such as autonomous driving, electric cars and car sharing will completely redefine the use of a passenger car.
The company says modern plastics and technologies will play an important role in its design in the car of the future.
The car interior will develop into a multifunctional living and working space. “This will result in completely new user expectations of the materials used,” explains Jochen Hardt, who heads Global Marketing Mobility at Covestro, in a plenary lecture on the first day of the congress.
Covestro presented a premium interior concept for this at the K 2019 plastics trade fair. The prototype developed together with partners will also be shown at the VDI Congress.
“At the same time, the concept offers new opportunities for differentiation for the automotive industry,” says Jochen Hardt, who is also a member of the expert committee for the VDI Congress.
Highlights include multi-sensory infotainment systems, innovative seating concepts, smart surfaces and personalised lighting.
Of particular importance is a continuous fibre-reinforced thermoplastic composite material which Covestro offers under the name Maezio. It is robust and lightweight and offers a great deal of design freedom. In the interior it is used in the seat shells and in a new space-saving table concept. The material also proves its versatility in the recently published compendium “Car Design Review 7”, whose cover is made of CFRTP material.
Covestro has developed a new concept for a battery housing based on the Baydur PUL polyurethane system in combination with pultrusion technology. This is a continuous process for the efficient production of fibre-reinforced plastic parts.
In a presentation on the first day of the congress, Galen Greene will report on the special mechanical stability of this material combined with its low weight.
“We would like to make our contribution to making electromobility safer, more economical and therefore more attractive with such developments and the associated tests,” Greene explains.
“To this end, we are also seeking partners for the further optimisation of this promising battery concept.”
Jochen Hardt is also a panelist in a discussion on the subject of “Recyclates – opportunities and general conditions for the use of plastics in the vehicle of the future” on the first day of the congress.
Covestro has been using bio-based raw materials and CO2 in production for years. Recently, a strategic cooperation was also agreed with the Finnish chemical company Neste on the supply of material from renewable sources. It is intended to replace an important part of the fossil raw materials previously used for the production of polycarbonates.
Covestro is currently working with partners to develop innovative technologies for recycling plastics.