The use of nonwovens has increased substantially in recent years. Today more than 40 automotive parts are made with nonwovens fabrics, from trunk liners and carpets to air and fuel filters.
By building in the essential properties which are necessary for good performance and safety, nonwovens help reduce the weight of the car, enhance the comfort and aesthetics and provide advanced insulation, fire retardancy and resistance to water, fuels, extremes of temperature and abrasion. They contribute to making cars safer, more attractive, longer-lasting, more cost-effective and more sustainable.
The use of natural fibre nonwovens, often as the reinforcing substrate in composite parts- is also increasing significantly. Due to their versatility and numerous benefits they are also widely used in the design and construction of other vehicles and transportation means – aeroplanes, trains, boats, spacecraft and satellites.
From Boeing’s waste to new wind blades…
Some major new high volume markets for nonwovens based on recycled carbon fibre are being opened up with the establishment of the first fully-integrated supply chain for recycling aerospace waste.
Even better than the real thing...
As is very evident at European motor shows, microfibre-based artificial leather is now actually a preferred option to natural leather for many of the leading car manufacturers and their customers.
Offices and lounges on the move
If, as many analysts are predicting, a historic shift is now taking place – from internal-combustion engines to electric vehicles controlled by software and chips – what will it mean for nonwovens in the automotive industry?
Car manufacturers find the solution to adding more components into smaller spaces: nonwovens
Automotive engine technology already includes many highly sensitive sensor technologies and as a result, the installation space for other components under the bonnet has been shrinking.
Lightweighting – the future of mobility
Special nonwovens have been at the heart of the BMW i Series initiative which is aiming to completely change the face of the automotive industry – with lightweight, carbon fibre-based cars achieving new records in fuel consumption and performance.
On your bike
Suppliers of nonwovens and related materials to the automotive industry should pay special attention to what’s happening right now in China – once known as the Kingdom of Bicycles.