In modern vehicle construction, practically all components can be bonded using industrial structural adhesives. The benefits of structural adhesives are particularly evident when different materials need to be bonded to each other. This is even more important when dealing with a mix of lightweight construction materials, where bonding would not be possible without adhesives. Cost-savings (e.g., replacement of mechanical fasteners with adhesives) provide an additional advantage. A medium-class vehicle requires welding at approximately 5,000 points, each costing around five cents. More than half of these can be replaced by adhesive joins, saving around 70 euros per vehicle. In addition, using one kilogram of adhesive reduces the vehicle weight by 25 kilograms, and adhesive-bonded vehicle bodies are more rigid, allowing thinner sheet metal to be used.
Degussa has successfully marketed AEROSIL® fumed silica and PRINTEX®-brand pigment blacks for windshield adhesives for many years. They enable the production of easy-to-process, strong and UV-stable adhesive products. Those are then applied with pinpoint accuracy to the body components using automated glue guns. The copolyester DYNACOLL® increases rapid curing and cuts assembly time.
A further development that is progressing well is the use of structural adhesives for bonding metal. These solutions again yield significant improvements in terms of body rigidity and crash behavior. They also offer the advantage of reduced weight, versatile design options and structural rigidity. All these advantages should significantly increase the market prospects for these plastic/metal combinations in the future.
Customized hot-melt adhesives based on DYNAPOL® S and DYNACOLL satisfy these sophisticated requirements: They achieve a maximum adhesive strength very rapidly, enabling the next stage of processing the adhesive-bonded components to take place immediately. Solvent-free adhesive reduces unpleasant evaporation in new cars, an occurrence known as fogging.
This is precisely what the adhesive additive MagSilica®, produced by the internal start-up company Degussa Advanced Nanomaterials, accomplishes. Adhesives containing this product can be heated using an alternating magnetic field that allows them to cure much faster than conventional products. Bonds created using this process can be undone using very selective heating, which results in the adhesive bond "switching off" again.
As the global market leader in specialty chemicals, Degussa uses its innovative products and system solutions to create something indispensable for its customers' success. It's an approach we sum up in our claim of "creating essentials." In fiscal 2004, Degussa's 45,000 employees generated sales of 11.2 billion euros and operating profits (EBIT) of 965 million euros.
For more information, visit http://www.degussa.com .