Wacker recently announced that parts of its silicone production have been successfully certified to the IATF 16949 automotive standard. As a result, Wacker can now supply automobile manufacturers and OEMs with silicone products that have been developed and manufactured according to IATF-certified processes. The certificates apply to selected company parts at the Burghausen site in Germany and Zhangjiagang in China. Corporate functions that support and control the manufacturing process were also certified.

The certified production plants manufacture two-component silicone rubber formulations that cure by an addition reaction at room temperature to form silicone elastomers. Known as SEMICOSIL®, ELASTOSIL®, and WACKER SilGel®, among others, these products serve as heat-conducting gap fillers, silicone adhesives, and potting compounds.

Silicones have become indispensable materials in electric vehicles. Potting compounds of silicone rubber reliably protect the onboard and control electronics against vibrations, moisture, and dirt. Thermal gap fillers improve the thermal management of the electric vehicle battery and power electronics, which produce considerable amounts of heat in operation or during charging and must therefore be reliably cooled.

“The automotive industry is a key industry and will remain so, not only for Germany,” said Robert Gnann, president of WACKER SILICONES. “Demand for high-performance materials, which also include our silicones, is growing steadily. For WACKER, it is just the right time to perform IATF certification. With our innovative silicone portfolio, we will boost the automotive industry in achieving its goals of productivity, efficiency and quality.”

IATF 16949 was developed in 2016 by leading European and North American automobile manufacturers. It combines the core requirements and quality management standards agreed on by the auto industry. The goal is to minimize quality risks and continually improve reliability of production and the supply chain. Certification according to IATF 16949 is an important condition for direct cooperation between the supplier and automobile manufacturer. With the successful certification, Wacker can supply silicone products directly to car manufacturers, as well as their system and module suppliers.

“Our customers require not only high-quality products, but also a reliable partner who is capable of offering individual tailor-made solutions that fully meet the industry’s strict guidelines and processes,” said Duke Cho, who heads both the Wacker Chemicals Korea subsidiary and the Industrial Solutions business unit of the WACKER SILICONES business division. “The certification demonstrates that we are fully capable of meeting these challenges and requirements in production and quality management. Our business in the field of electromobility will profit significantly from this.”

Additional details are available at www.wacker.com.