A novel process and a new material combined to produce one of the more unusual entries among the fi nalists for the SPE Automotive Innovation Awards last fall. The application was an intercooler air duct for the 2008 Volkswagen Tiguan 2L diesel engine. The duct is suction blow molded; in the past, the attachment brackets were injection molded and then welded onto the duct body, involving three separate steps. Rochling Automotive of Germany and Duncan, S.C., developed a one-step process called Jectbonding, involving simultaneous blow and injection molding. A small injection unit mounted on the blow molding tool injects four attachment points via a runner system, using air infl ation of the duct tube to withstand the injection pressure. The result is said to be 20% stronger bond and greater consistency than with welding, plus time savings, since it all happens within a 60-sec cycle.
Rochling started using the process in 2008 with nylon 66, but this application required higher heat resistance. This is a worldwide first for plastics replacing metal in a highly demanding turbocharger air duct—on the “hot side,” requiring exposure to 230 C/446 F at 2.7 bars overpressure. The application required Ticona of Florence, Ky., to develop a blow moldable grade of Fortron PPS with 15% glass. Roechling is now looking at possibilities for Jectbonding in intake manifolds, fuel tanks, and fuel rails.
(864) 486-0888 • roechling.com
(800)833-4882 • ticona.com
8040 Dixie Hwy. Florence, KY 41042-2904
Phone (859) 525-4740 Fax (859) 372-3125
Editor PickFocusing on People
In addition to numerous employees with two and three decades of experience, Iowa blow molder is building out its future staff via apprenticeships and area-school outreach.