New automotive designs show trend toward olefins

Several important new applications in new model cars show the accelerating trend toward use of thermoplastic olefins in automotive design, reflecting efforts to reduce weight, cut costs and improve the potential for recycling.

One dramatic example is an all-olefin liftgate in the 2014 Nissan Motor Rogue which was the grand award winner in this year's Automotive Innovation Awards program held by the Society of Plastics Engineers.

Use of polypropylene thermoplastic olefin results in unique styling compared to versions in stamped metal or thermoset composites such as sheet molding compound, according to Melissa Koryabina, a program manager at LyondellBasell USA (Lansing, MI), which supplied the TPO outer. Advanced Composites (Sidney, OH), a joint venture established by Mitsui Chemicals in 2003, supplied the inner panel....

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