Solvay Composite Materials, a new global business unit for composite materials from Belgian-based chemical company Solvay has displayed a new steering knuckle prototype that has been manufactured for Magneti Marelli. It is said to be the first of its kind component that has been developed in close collaboration between both companies.
Solvay claims that the steering knuckle’s complex geometry was designed to maximise the properties of its thermoplastic composites and injection moulding materials. The prototype is said to showcase the benefits of compression moulding and overmoulding processes and the combination of Solvay’s Amodel PPA thermoplastic compound and Evolite PPA thermoplastic composites - products developed specifically for high-temperature automotive functional applications. The development also highlights how novel high-performance materials, rate-capable processing methods and a smart part design can be combined to result in structural performance, function integration and weight saving.
Gerald Perrin, Global Automotive Director at Solvay Composite Materials Global Business Unit said, “We are proud of our contribution to this prototype. This is a successful combined application of Solvay’s Amodel and Evolite PPA thermoplastic composite technologies which meets the rate and process flexibility expected by automotive manufacturers.”
Marco Goia, head of product development at Magneti Marelli Ride Dynamics said, “This prototype is the first of its kind in the field of suspensions. By using promising materials and processing technologies we were able to combine high performance thermoformed laminates with injection molding to create complex and non-conventional geometries. This combination enabled the design of a functionally integrated component including co-molded structural sleeves. Magneti Marelli led the project from concept - using advanced design methodologies, to prototyping and benefited from Solvay’s materials science application and process tuning expertise.”