Everberg, Belgium – Huntsman has launched a new biobased version of its Acoustiflex viscoelastic foam. Acoustiflex VEF Bio is designed for moulded acoustic applications in the automotive industry.
The foam contains up to 20% biobased content, which is derived from vegetable oils. The company said it has the potential to reduce the carbon footprint of automotive carpet-back foaming by up to a quarter compared to its existing Acoustiflex foams. It also has potential in dash and wheel arch insulation.
The company claims that its formulation team have managed to integrate the bio-based content into the system with no impact on its acoustic or mechanical characteristics. It said it can outclass standard high resilient foams at frequencies below 500Hz, and remains lightweight, with no processing disadvantages, notably when creating components with complex geometric shapes and sharp angles.
‘Previously, there was a frustration that incorporating bio-based content into a polyurethane foam system would have a detrimental impact on performance, specifically on emission and odour levels,’ said Irina Bolshakova, global marketing lead for automotive polyurethanes at Huntsman. ‘The development of [this] system proves that doesn’t need to be the case.’