If the work involves lighter weight, greater dimensional stability, or thermal and/or electrical insulation, 3M glass bubbles can help. In fact, they already have. As a replacement for common additive fillers such as calcium carbonate and talc, our high-strength, low-density polymer additives have resulted in weight reduction of up to 40% in automotive sheet-molded composite and up to 25% in thermoplastics. Each of these materials may be used for xEV battery lids and battery modules. Glass bubbles feature properties for weight reduction and beyond, allowing OEMs and Tier suppliers to further advance their materials and keep up with the needs of vehicle electrification.
Using 3M glass bubbles as a lightweight additive for battery components – and components throughout the vehicle – can translate into increased range for xEVs and increased fuel efficiency for hybrid vehicles. Inherent low dielectric and high electrical insulating properties of 3M glass bubbles can lead to lower power loss and more robust battery performance over time.
Our high-strength, low-density microspheres with good flow characteristics can withstand the high pressures of compounding and injection molding. They can also enable faster cooling for cycle time reduction and allow for reduced operating pressures. This can translate into lower production costs overall.
Our 3M glass bubbles have been instrumental for automotive lightweighting in body and under hood/dash applications. Now, they deliver key properties that help optimize designs and material selection in hybrid and EV battery components.
The isotropic spherical geometry helps promote uniform thermal expansion and contraction for increased dimensional stability.
Compared to conventional fillers 3M glass bubbles allow you to create lighter, more uniform parts from polypropylene, nylon, acetal and other engineered thermoplastics, as well as many thermoset materials.
Being chemically inert and often displacing polymer resin, 3M glass bubbles can help decrease reactive burning during a thermal runaway event.
Continental Structural Plastics (CSP) of Troy, Michigan, reports significant new advances in weight reduction of thermoset parts used in automotive and non-automotive panels including exterior applications.
Resin compounder Noble Polymers of Grand Rapids, Michigan, a subsidiary of Cascade Engineering, has developed a low-density polyolefin resin formulation that reduces the weight of TPO plastic parts by up to twenty percent.
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