has launched a new range of low-emission MDI-based foam systems for automotive
interiors: the ACOUSTIFLEX LE and
RUBIFLEX LE polyurethane product lines. These innovative technologies allow global automotive formulators
and foam manufacturers to produce
high-performance polyurethane foams, while significantly
reducing interior emissions levels to meet OEMs’ requirements.
automotive industry is continually progressing toward its sustainability
targets, as it addresses consumer preferences and emerging regulations
governing Vehicle Interior Air Quality emissions from interior components –
including national laws in many countries, new international ISO standards or
policies such as the Circular Cars Initiative EU policy action roadmap. With
low emission (LE) forward-looking technologies, Huntsman has responded to the
industry’s challenge to lower emissions of interior components by building
sustainability into its product lines. This brings manufacturers and drivers
cleaner, lighter, more circular PU technologies that offer advanced comfort.
The portfolio of ACOUSTIFLEX LE and
RUBIFLEX LE low-emission polyurethanes are the first fully commercialized
technologies in the market. These products have been developed for automotive
seating parts and sound insulation components. They are commonly used for
making a wide range of standard automotive components, simplifying procurement
and value chains for producers, who can reduce the different types of PU
products they need to procure.
LE and RUBIFLEX LE materials are now available,
after testing at two European Huntsman technical centres and in independent
evaluations by external laboratories. They are also at the final approval stage
of several leading global OEMs and interior component producers.
Luc Van Essche,
Technology Development Leader of Huntsman says that its new low-emission PU
system is an innovation that brings benefits along the automotive value chain –
to drivers, manufacturers, OEMs, and components producers. “We believe that our
innovation contributes to a safer and cleaner environment for every person
travelling inside a car. Together with our business partners, we are
contributing to transforming the transportation industry toward cleaner and
safer mobility in a more carbon neutral and circular society. From a commercial
perspective, this new system helps formulators and foam manufacturers do better
business, delivering the required performance levels for their processing of
polyurethane foams, while significantly lowering emissions to meet OEMs
Low emission, high-performance
Global emission standards are imposing strict
low emission limits on formaldehyde and acetaldehyde emissions. This means that
some existing foam technologies used for making interior car parts today will
be phased out.
Equally, emission requirements for producing
sound insulation are becoming more challenging. Current systems use a ‘fast
cure’ production process, which generally results in increased emissions. With
Huntsman’s new low-emission technology, manufacturers can make components that
contribute to reduced interior emissions and still deliver performance
identical to their currently used PU materials, and with no modification to
their current production chains.
Testing and validating the new Huntsman
Comprehensive test results confirm that the
Huntsman system meets leading manufacturers’ emission targets. The low-emission
and odour characteristics of flexible foams made from Huntsman’s novel system
were validated using volatile organic compound chamber measurement, by
accredited external testing institutes.
The evaluations confirm that these products
can deliver consistent emission results and product performance levels that
were not possible for past low-emission products. The mechanical and comfort
performance of interior components made with ACOUSTIFLEX LE and
RUBIFLEX LE low-emission polyurethanes are not compromised when compared to
existing commercial systems.
These typical properties can vary depending
on local circumstances and application and are not part of the specifications