Self-extinguishing compounds for electric mobility

Aug. 4, 2021

Self-extinguishing compounds for electric mobility

The advent of electric vehicles for public and private transport is a process that is now very much under way. Indeed, it is forecast that by 2040 a good 35% of registered cars will be electric powered, either battery powered (BEVs) or plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs).

All the major car manufacturers and internal combustion engine specialists are now seeking to diversify their production, so as to be able to accommodate this completely new and revolutionary technology.

This historic transition throws up numerous challenges to be met, the main one being the safe management of the significant electrical voltages and currents present in these vehicles.

All the structural parts, the batteries and the systems controlling and transporting electrical energy must, in fact, be able to guarantee maximum user protection at all times: when the vehicle is running, when it is being recharged, and when it is parked, not to mention in the event of accidents.

Clearly, then, the use of materials resistant to electrical voltages and able to cope with the fire risk associated with the presence of short circuits, or simply the high temperature of metal parts, is fundamental.

For all these reasons, self-extinguishing plastic compounds are now rightly taking their place in the automotive world, emerging as ideal products from which to make charging systems, as well as supports and housings for electrical and electronic parts, engine parts and batteries.

Furthermore, knowing the most important parameters to monitor, namely flame retardancy, glow wire resistance, thermal and physical aging, resistance to environmental conditions and creeping currents, dielectric rigidity and mechanical strength, is just as important as choosing the right material. The decision-making process is complex and calls for highly specific skills.

LATI, strengthened by half a century of experience in the world of self-extinguishing compounds, is ideally placed to offer car designers valuable know-how, experience and a wide portfolio of UL and VDE approved materials.

The aim is to generate effective solutions such as those fielded by the major players in the E&E and rail transport sector with which LATI has always collaborated – solutions able to give excellent results even in situations that are, from the regulatory standpoint, extremely complex and demanding.

Thanks to LATI’s self-extinguishing compounds, born of years of research and ongoing improvement, it is now possible to address the fire and flame hazard problem through solutions that, in addition to their low environmental impact, are modern and versatile, in other words, suitable for creating complex geometries of any size, as well as structural elements and other functional parts including thermally conductive solutions suitable for heat management.

The LATI range self-extinguishing grades covers all resins, none excluded: PA and PBT for traditional applications also available in the orange RAL2003/2008 color, PPS and PPA for high temperatures, PEEK for extreme conditions.

Soon to be released also certified green compounds based on PA from chemical and mechanical recycling.

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