1991-02-01

Development of High Strength Substrate for Use in Modular Headliner Systems 910783

OBJECTIVE - to develop a Headliner substrate of particularly high strength which would meet the future demands of modular Headliner system construction.Research Approach was to use readily available, low cost raw materials with known capability and enhance the material properties through applied research.From the investigation emerged two significant material enhancements, one of which was Polyphenolic Oxide Foams and the second being Glass Reinforced Felts. This paper details the GRF results.Despite felt having a low cost material base, with good sound absorption properties, it has lost ground to more sophisticated laminates due to poor environmental stability, high weights and poor strength to weight ratios.The development of “glass reinforced felts” was aimed at resolving these deficiencies. Glass fibres have a well proven dimensional stability but hitherto have been difficult to “blend” through tradition carding/lapping/airlay process systems. Such methods of combining fibres generate atmospheric contamination which in turn created operator difficulties in health and safety problems. The research programme evaluated alternative process methods and devised a laminating technique which overcame all of these inherent difficulties.Bonding of glass and cotton felt fibres was evaluated using numerous liquid or powder resin/adhesive options. The paper details the bonding formulation and physical characteristics obtained from the new GRF material.A design requirement of the Manufacturing Process was to produce a variety of different Headliner products simultaneously from a continuous raw material feed system.This design complication was resolved through mathematical grouping to achieve the best cutting pattern from continuous roll feed materials.The machine layout was configured to divert selected group sizes to the appropriate moulding station using a series of transportation conveyors and transfer tables. The paper details the process.The paper concludes by summarising the physical properties achieved and shows design concept examples of pre-assembled Headliner systems ready to be “clip mounted” at the Car Plant Trackside.

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