Impending VOC emission restrictions drive amines-free car seat foam development


New restrictions set to be introduced in Asia restricting permissable levels of volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions in vehicle interiors are behind the development of an amines emission-free polyurethane (PU) foam formulation for automotive interior applications by Dow Automotive Systems (Auburn Hills, MI). More details in this development have now emerged from a Tier I that will be the first to employ the foam in its products.

Faurecia, the world's sixth-largest automotive supplier, says the new type of TDI foam for vehicle seats that it has developed jointly with Dow Automotive Systems "eliminates 99% of volatile amines emissions which concur to a reduction of global VOC emissions by 60%, while improving seating comfort, a breakthrough solution in the current automotive seating industry." Volatile amines can have a harmful impact on the health of passengers, produce an intensely unpleasant odor inside the vehicle and cause windshield fogging.

The Faurecia volatile amines-free foam pads, employing Dow's Speflex Activ polyurethane solution, will begin to be used soon by French automakers. Other premium automakers in Europe are also currently investigating the new Faurecia foam.
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