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Technical Paper

Acoustic and Structural Treatment of Body-in-White

Automotive body structures are developed to meet vehicle performance requirements primarily based on ride and handling, crashworthiness, and noise level targets. The body is made of a multitude of sheet metal stampings welded together. Other closures such as fenders, hood, doors and trunk lid are developed to match body interfaces, to contribute and participate in the overall vehicle response, and to meet the sub-system and system structural requirements. In order to improve performance and achieve weight reduction of the overall vehicle steel structure, new polymeric materials and treatment strategies are available to body structural engineers to optimize the response of the vehicle and to tune vehicle performance to meet specified functional requirements. If early integrated to the design cycle, these materials help not only improve the structural body response, but also decrease the weight of the integrated body structure.
Technical Paper

Adhesive Bonding Performance of GA Coated 590 MPa Tensile Strength Steels

Advanced high strength steels (AHSS) are becoming major enablers for vehicle light weighting in the automotive industry. Crash resistant and fracture-toughened structural adhesives have shown potential to improve vehicle stiffness, noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH), and crashworthiness. They provide weight reduction opportunity while maintaining crash performance or weight increase avoidance while meeting the increasing crash requirement. Unfortunately, the adhesive bonding of galvanneal (GA)-coated steels has generally yielded adhesive failures with the GA coating peeling from the steel substrate resulting in poor bond strength. A limited study conducted by ArcelorMittal and Dow Automotive in 2008 showed that GA-coated AHSS exhibited cohesive failure, and good bond strength and crash performance. In order to confirm the reliable performance, a project focusing on the consistency of the adhesive bond performance of GA-coated steels of 590 MPa strength level was initiated.
Technical Paper

All Thermoplastic Lightweight Structural Rear-Seat-Back

An innovative seat back design for fold down split-rear seat backs has been developed for application in SUV’s, MPV’s and hatchbacks. The all-thermoplastic seat back design meets US and European government regulations such as, the FMVSS 210, 207 in the US, and ECE 17 (luggage retention) in Europe. It is also expected to meet the newly introduced FMVSS 225 (child seat belt tether load) requirement. Currently application of the blow molded seat back is limited to sedans where the seat belt anchor loads are transmitted to a steel package shelf. For applications where the seat-belt anchor loads are transmitted to the seat back, hefty steel frame and reinforcements are required which add weight and cost to the seat back. The same is true for seats that need to comply with the European luggage retention requirement.
Technical Paper

Bonding Studies between Fracture Toughened Adhesives and Galvannealed Steels with Zinc Coating

Adhesive bonding technology is rapidly gaining acceptance as an alternative to spot welding. This technology is helping automobile manufacturers reduce vehicle weight by letting them use lighter but stronger advanced high strength steels (AHSS's). This can make cars safer and more fuel efficient at the same time. The other benefits of this technology include its flexibility, ability to join dissimilar materials, distribute stress uniformly, provide sealing characteristics and sound dampening, and provide a moisture barrier, thus minimizing the chance for corrosion. The lap shear work reported in the late 1980s and early 1990s has led to the prevalent perception that the galvannealed (GA) coating can delaminate from the steels, resulting in poor joint performance. However, the above work was carried out on steels used primarily in automobile outer body panels.
Technical Paper

Structural Front-End Carrier Using Long Glass Fiber Polypropylene

Modular front-end carriers to pre-assemble front-end components such as cooling systems, lights, and bumper beam have been in production in different vehicles for several years. Compression molded or overmolded steel/plastic carriers have traditionally been used. The present paper explains the design, material options, and engineering optimization of a composite front-end carrier, which utilizes long glass fiber injection moldable resins and adhesively bonded steel reinforcements. Experimental evaluation of prototypes shows the system met the functional performance requirements at minimum weight.