Browse Publications Technical Papers 2002-01-0717
2002-03-04

How Microcellular Foam Molding Changes the Cost Structure of Injection Molded Automotive Components: A Review of the Process and Automotive Applications 2002-01-0717

The MuCell® microcellular foam injection molding process is being applied by the world's leading automotive components manufacturers as a core plastics manufacturing technology to achieve (1) higher productivity, (2) vehicle weight reduction, (3) quality improvement, and (4) cost savings.
The microcellular foam injection molding process results in automotive components that are lighter, flatter, straighter, and more dimensionally stable at extreme operating temperatures compared to conventionally molded parts.
The process uses supercritical fluids (SCF) of inert gases, typically nitrogen or carbon dioxide, to create evenly distributed and uniformly sized microscopic cells throughout a polymer. Suitable for injection molding (as well as extrusion and blow molding), the microcellular foam process enhances product design, improves processing efficiency, and reduces product costs.
Driven largely by economics, a transition from conventional molding to microcellular foam processing is occurring within an extensive range of vehicle systems including powertrain and chassis, interior and exterior systems, electrical/electronic systems, and thermal and energy systems.

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