Sustainable Fillers as a Replacement for Mineral Fillers in Polyamide Composites

Paper #:
  • 2017-01-0486

Published:
  • 2017-03-28
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Abstract:
In light of growing global awareness of environmental concerns, automotive manufacturers have received pressure from governmental regulations and consumer demand to incorporate more recycled materials into vehicle production. Polyamide 6 (nylon 6, PA6), a polymer used in many automotive components, is a prime target for the incorporation of recycled materials. PA6 is used and recovered by the carpet industry, and can be processed into a usable recycled polymer (RPA6). To evaluate the potential use of RPA6, injection molded samples comprised of RPA6, glass fiber, and one of three recycled fillers (rice husk ash, micronized rubber powder, and torrefied biomass) will be prepared and subjected to mechanical, thermal, morphological, and rheological testing. It is predicted that these materials will meet the requirements for automotive door handles, engine fan shrouds, and turn signal arms, which are typically made from glass-reinforced nylons. The use of these fillers will reduce the density of molded parts, improving fuel economy by reducing vehicle weight as well as reducing the influx of waste to landfills. The results from this testing may encourage the use of more recycled materials in vehicles. In addition, this experiment will indicate the viability of non-traditional fillers in the composites.
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