Life Cycle Assessment of Advanced Materials for Automotive Applications 2000-01-1486
Substituting alternative materials for conventional materials in automotive applications is an important strategy for reducing environmental burdens over the entire life cycle through weight reduction. Strong, light carbon composites and lightweight metals can potentially be used for components such as body structure, chassis parts, brakes, tie rods, or instrument panel structural beams. There are also proposed uses in conventional and alternative powered vehicles for other advanced materials, including synthetic graphite, titanium, and metals coated with graphite composite, that have special strength, hardness, corrosion resistance, or conductivity properties. The approach used in this paper was to compare the environmental life cycle inventory of parts made from carbon fiber-thermoplastic composites, synthetic graphite, titanium, and graphite coated aluminum, with parts made from conventional steel or aluminum.