Automotive Engineers See Stronger Regulations on the Horizon, Says
DuPont Emphasizes Materials-Based Science Solutions to Help Conserve Fuel,
TROY, Mich., Aug. 7, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- via PRWEB - With automotive
regulations governing fuel economy and CO2 emissions being discussed in Europe
and the United States, nearly half of automotive engineers predict those
regulations will strengthen, according to a WardsAuto and DuPont survey
conducted in late July. Only 8 percent predict regulations will relax,
primarily due to economic and cost issues, and one-fourth expect no change,
the results show. (See chart "Automotive Engineers Predict Regulation Review
Will Strengthen Fuel Economy, CO2 Emission Regulations")
The survey results also show the value for lightweighting vehicles to help
meet targets is increasing, and that every system in the vehicle is a
candidate for reduced mass. (See chart "Automotive Lightweighting Continues to
Grow in Value")
"Fuel and emission standards throughout the world are driving significant
changes in vehicle design," said DuPont Performance Polymers President Diane
H. Gulyas. "There are multiple solutions simultaneously getting into the
market and the industry must continue to work in harmony to develop low
emission, fuel-efficient vehicles that consumers want to drive."
Now in its third year, the annual survey with WardsAuto was conducted as the
European Union delayed a vote to adopt stringent 2020 emission regulations.
This uncertainty, coupled with the mid-term evaluation process built into the
2017-2025 U.S. regulations, stimulated a survey asking subscribers to weigh in
on the outcome and whether their companies are reacting to uncertainties. More
than 1,300 subscribers to leading industry publication WardsAuto responded to
the survey (see PDF file "WardsAuto World Industry Study Report (2013)").
Forty three percent say there are no changes, 36 percent say there are some or
many changes in the development pipeline (see chart "Regulation Reviews Have
Impacted Some Current Vehicle Programs").
While last year's respondents gave aluminum a slight edge over plastics and
composites as the material that can best help them meet regulations,
respondents today are looking at all materials in the portfolio (see chart
"Automotive Engineers See All Materials Helping Meet Fuel Economy
In 2011 surveys with the Society of Automotive Engineers and WardsAuto, the
automotive engineering community revealed that materials are critical to a
product's success, yet most said they were not confident that today's
materials portfolio would help them meet CAFE regulations.
"We've seen a variety of materials-based solutions introduced in the past
couple years," said Mike Day, DuPont Automotive Performance Polymers
development director in North America. "And development activity with the
automakers is intensifying, especially related to new composite and
multi-material solutions that deliver the strength and stiffness needed for
performance and safety."
Last month DuPont highlighted a developmental composite technology called
DuPont™ Vizilon® in a PSA Peugeot Citroen side-impact door beam. This
developmental thermoplastic composite technology showed a 40 percent weight
reduction compared to ultra-high strength (UHHS) steel and absorbed more
energy than metal and short glass-fibre polymer beams to pass the PSA Peugeot
Citroën's crash test.
"Speed is critical," said Day "but not at the expense of performance and
safety. We believe that close collaboration on these new technologies is more
important than ever before. Each of us brings to the table a deep knowledge
and different perspective. The synergy experienced when we converge is the
catalyst that sparks the breakthrough."
Diverse Technologies Fuel Automotive Efforts
Lightweighting is core to meeting new standards and one that is growing in
value, according to more than 60 percent of respondents. Further, when asked
which systems are the most likely targets – all ranked relatively equally.
"The results reflect that every system, every component throughout the vehicle
is a candidate for weight savings," said Day. "This is a great time to
incorporate plastics early in the design stage since there are many more
opportunities to integrate functions for significant mass and cost savings."
In addition to lightweighting, the industry continues to optimize the
internal-combustion engine, develop hybrid and electric vehicles and adopt
alternative fuels. For its part, DuPont offers advanced materials to help
reduce mass and improve efficiency; battery chemistries and materials for more
efficient electric-powered vehicles; and has collaborated to develop low
global warming potential refrigerants for vehicles and biofuels manufactured
from non-food based cellulosic resources.
"The challenges facing the automotive community are so significant and global
that they must be attacked from multiple angles simultaneously, tapping into
global teams for support and fresh ideas," Gulyas added.
About the Survey
The WardsAuto survey was sponsored by DuPont and conducted by Paramount
Research, Coralville, Iowa. Forty-three percent of the 1,300 respondents
indicate they work for system, component or parts manufacturers; 24 percent
work for an automaker; and the balance work for engine or engine-service
companies. Nearly half the respondents say they work in engineering, R&D or in
quality/reliability. Sixteen percent work in management and the remainder
represent manufacturing, purchasing or other field.
DuPont offers more than 100 materials and product families for the global
automotive industry. Through its global application development network,
DuPont Automotive is committed to collaborating with customers throughout the
value chain to develop new products, materials, components and systems that
help reduce dependence on fossil fuels and protect people and the environment.
For more information, visit automotive.dupont.com.
DuPont (NYSE:DD) has been bringing world-class science and engineering to the
global marketplace in the form of innovative products, materials, and services
since 1802. The company believes that by collaborating with customers,
governments, NGOs, and thought leaders we can help find solutions to such
global challenges as providing enough healthy food for people everywhere,
decreasing dependence on fossil fuels, and protecting life and the
environment. For additional information about DuPont and its commitment to
inclusive innovation, please visit http://www.dupont.com.
The DuPont Oval Logo, DuPont™, The miracles of science™ and Vizilon® are
trademarks or registered trademarks of DuPont or its affiliates.
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