• Geelen, Netherlands-based plastics materials supplier Polyscope Polymers BV (Hall 5/B39) received first place for guide rails for roller-blind sunroofs used by Saint Vaud-based roofing system specialist Webasto Thermo & Comfort France SAS for the 2016 Renault-Nissan Grand Scenic car.
The rails are injection molded in Xiran SGH30, a 30 percent glass fiber-reinforced SMA/ABS blend in tools supplied by La Séguinière, France-headquartered ARRK Shapers.
• Second place went to Rotterdam, Netherlands-based plastics materials distributor LyondellBasell B.V. (Hall 8A/D12) for Class A surface quality unpainted silver metallic molded-in-color lamellae on the cooling grid of a 2018 Mercedes Benz C-Class Cabriolet car, molded in the Schulamid nylon 6/12 GB7X GB7 HiU 96.7914 compound from Kerpen, Germany-based compounder A. Schulman Europe GmbH.
Morsbach, Germany based Montaplast GmbH made the tools and molds the parts. Such metallic parts have in the past needed to be painted in order to hide knit lines.
Powertrain and Structural Component:
• First place went to Louverné, France-based Mann + Hummel France SAS for development of an active cooling valve-based thermal management part for a 2018 model year car of Hyundai Kia Motor Co. HKMC in South Korea. The mold was produced by Braunschweig, Germany-based TK Mold Germany GmbH (Hall 1/E63) and it is used on an Engel Austria GmbH injection molding machine. Domat/Ems, Switzerland-based EMS-Chemie AG (Hall 6/E61) supplies engine coolant resistant PPA GF35, PA66+6 GF35 and PPS GF40 grades for the highly complex multifunctional valve part.
• Engineering thermoplastics producer Sabic Deutschland GmbH (Hall 6/D42) received second place in the structural component category for development of a multimaterial metal/plastic lightweight carrier, as a potential serial production part for future BMW Group electric drive cars, in the Stamax 40YK270 E grade of 40 percent long glass fiber-reinforced PP.
The parts have been molded at BMW AG's Landshut, Germany, plant in mold tools from Biedenkopf, Germany-based Müller-Wallau Modell- und Formenbau GmbH & Co. KG, with the metal and plastic elements bonded together by laser welding equipment from Ditzingen, Germany-based Trumpf Laser- und Systemtechnik GmbH.
• The Innovation Award went to Bodelshausen, Germanv-based injection molder Joma-Polytec GmbH for development in 2018 of fuel cell components in Ultramid A3WG10 CR und A3EGG7 EQ glass fiber-reinforced nylon materials from BASF SE (Hall 5/C21-D21) for Kirchheim unter Teck, Germany-based Mercedes-Benz Fuel Cell GmbH.
The components involve watertight anode and cathode end plate, media distribution plate and water separation unit parts that have been bonded together by hot gas welding, using equipment from Bielefeld, Germany-based KVT Bielefeld GmbH (Hall 11/D63).
• The Grand Innovation Award was received by Ettenheim, Germany-based fluid assist equipment producer PME fluidtec GmbH and mold maker ARRK Shapers: for development of a lightweight, low-cost side door structure for the Renault Megane Coupé car in fluid assisted 40 percent long glass fiber-reinforced PP. A carbon fiber-reinforced version is also under investigation.
• Third place under enabler technology was taken by Aachen, Germany-based plastics machinery producer Yizumi Germany GmbH (Hall 14/C59) and the IKV plastics processing institute at RWTH University (Hall 14/C16) in Aachen for the SEAM screw extrusion additive manufacturing process for 3D printing fiber-reinforced plastic granulate.
The process has involved the B3 ICF 30 9 grade of short carbon fiber-reinforced polyamide, part of the so-called Space A product family, from Niederzissen, Germany-based compounder Akro-Plastic GmbH (Hall 6/B42).
The process enables a combination of additive and subtractive production on an automated and scalable basis, which has been illustrated by production of scaled-down wind power blades. The jury observed that the ability of carbon fiber to rapidly heat and cool the compound contributes to relatively high speed for this type of 3D printing.
The next SPE CE Automotive Award Night will take place in Neuss on Nov. 30, 2020.