ContiTech Develops Lighter and More Resistant Materials for Vehicle Components
(PresseBox) (Hannover, ). - Polyurethane protective gaiter protects passenger car suspension from stone impacts
- Torque clutch made from carbon-fiber-reinforced polyamide with much lower weight
ContiTech Vibration Control has developed two new products for use in the automotive industry. Thanks to new materials or material combinations, they help to improve components in passenger cars further. "Both new developments offer significant added value for our customers in the automotive industry," remarks Kai Peters, head of the Sealing Systems Chassis segment. "They deliver innovative solutions for extending the service life of the vehicle components and further reducing weight. Consequently, they fulfill the requirements of the automotive industry of today and tomorrow."
The new developments include a protective gaiter for premium-class passenger cars. Attached inside the wheel arch, it protects the elements of the vehicle's air suspension against stone impact, thereby extending the service life of the sensitive area. What sets the new version from ContiTech apart is the material used, which ContiTech has developed specifically for these applications. The main component is thermoplastic polyurethane. It is much more flexible and has greater rebound strength than the standard material made from thermoplastic polymers. This means that its resistance capability is much greater. "The special nature of the material can be felt immediately," says Rolf Weiß, head of Product Development at ContiTech Vibration Control in Dannenberg. "Tests have confirmed the material's resistance to abrasion."
Torque clutch: Weight halved
ContiTech has also launched a new torque clutch. The weight of this component is less than half that of previous variants. This helps to reduce the overall weight of the vehicle, driving down fuel consumption further as a result.
This is possible because of the materials used. One important element is carbon-fiber-reinforced polyamide. A similar material is already used for other vehicle components such as transmission crossbeams and torque rod supports. "In relation to this torque clutch, however, it is a first," says Weiß. The assembly also contains components made from thermoplastic polyurethane. This combination makes the torque clutch particularly abrasion-resistant. The material reduces wear throughout the entire service life of the component. In passenger cars with electronic steering assistance, it links the engine with the transmission at the steering and protects the transmission by compensating for the axle offset in the event of wear.
The Dannenberg plant has been part of the Continental Corporation since 1961. Today, two ContiTech business units manufacture products at the location. Vibration Control produces various components for the automotive industry, such as axle boots, convoluted air springs, and clutches. The Power Transmission Group in Dannenberg makes belts for industrial applications and drive belts for electric bicycles. Around 300 employees work at the plant.