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Sheet molding composites (SMCs) are well known for being more light weight than metals or other types of composite materials. Now, compounders and resin suppliers can produce SMC parts that are up to 40% lighter, enabling ultralightweight composites that replace heavier steel and aluminum body panels, hoods, trunk lids and more. That’s because 3M™ Glass Bubbles – tiny, hollow glass microspheres added to resins in SMC production – are engineered to withstand the requirements of the sheet molding process despite their low density. Best of all, they help enable your parts to meet OEM requirements for Class A paintable surfaces.
Weight reduction: 3M Glass Bubbles can enable densities below 1.0 g/cc and a total SMC component weight reduction of 45%, making ultralightweight SMC parts a replacment for metal in more places on the vehicle.
Class A paintable finishes: While fillers can sometimes affect the final part surface, compounders and resin suppliers can still produce lightweight SMCs with a Class A Paintable finish – making SMCs/BMCs a replacement in many more places on the vehicle.
Weight reduction: 3M Glass Bubbles can enable densities below 1.0 g/cc and a total SMC component weight reduction of 40%, making SMC parts a replacement for metal in more places on the vehicle.
Pictured: Lightweight SMC panels made with 3M Glass Bubbles.
See how 3M Glass Bubbles can help you reduce the density of your compound formulations, leading to lighter weight parts. This weight volume calculator allows you to compare your reference compound formulation with lighter formulations that use 3M™ Glass Bubbles.
3M Glass Bubbles are supported by global sales, technical and customer service resources. Contact us for more information, including formulation assistance or questions about a specific application.