Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Engine mounts made from dandelions

18.09.2015

At the International Motor Show IAA in Frankfurt, ContiTech presents promising research results for mounting elements based on the so-called »Taraxagum«, a natural rubber extracted from dandelions. Together with Continental and since 2013, scientists of the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Biology and Biotechnology of Plants (IBBP) at the University of Münster have been exploring how dandelions could be used in a sustainable way as an alternative source of rubber for the rubber processing industry. In the context of this project, Continental Reifen GmbH has already successfully tested car tire prototypes.

ContiTech Vibration Control developers are now testing if natural rubber made from dandelions might also be used to reduce engine vibrations. At the IAA ContiTech presents first and promising research findings for a possible application in mounting elements in vehicles. The natural rubber is supposed to adapt the elements to different applications in gearbox and enginge mounts and at the same time make the parts durable.


ContiTech engine mount Taraxagum

ContiTech

They bear static loads, insulate the structure-borne sound, limit the movement of the engine, and prevent it from tearing off in the event of an accident. They also damp vibrations and impacts that come from the roads.

»The demands on engine mounts are completely different to those on tires. For example, we have to cope with heavy dynamic loads at high temperatures. This means that the focus of our developments is different to that of our tire colleagues,« says Dr. Anna Misiun, who leads the research activities of the project at ContiTech. Regardless of the different products for which dandelion rubber might be used, it always implies considerable environmental benefits.

Better CO2 balance of the raw material,
greater independence from market fluctuations

Professor Dirk Prüfer and Dr. Christian Schulze Gronover of the Fraunhofer IME and the IBBP: »The plant is extremely resilient, able to grow in moderate climates and even in soil that is not suited for the cultivation of food and feed crops. Thus, there is no need for transportation from tropical countries. This improves the CO2 balance of the raw material considerably.« Moreover, the greater independence from traditional raw materials with sometimes highly fluctuating market prices also offers advantages for the industry.

The development of an environmentally and resource friendly production process for natural rubber on an industrial scale is the overarching objective of the collaboration of the scientists from Continental and Fraunhofer IME. This objective has already come a lot closer with the development of a laboratory-scale pilot plant for the extraction of natural rubber from the roots of the Russian dandelion – and with the production of corresponding tire prototypes.

In tests under summer and winter conditions, those tires performed just as well as tires made with rubber tree caoutchouc. For their achievements, the scientists involved were awarded with a Joseph-von-Fraunhofer Prize 2015th. Now, the production is to be scaled up so that it finally works for industrial use, measured in tons. With that, in rubber production, the «blowball« develops to an ecologically and economically very attractive alternative to the tropical rubber tree.

However, it will still take several years until industrial production can start. »First, the homework has to be done: The plant needs to be further optimized. For the highest possible rubber yield, for sowing, planting and rubber extraction on a large scale,« say the two scientists.

Weitere Informationen:

http://www.ime.fraunhofer.de

Sabine Dzuck | Fraunhofer-Institut für Molekularbiologie und Angewandte Oekologie IME

More articles from Materials Sciences:

nachricht Nagoya physicists resolve long-standing mystery of structure-less transition
21.08.2017 | Nagoya University

nachricht Scientists from the MSU studied new liquid-crystalline photochrom
21.08.2017 | Lomonosov Moscow State University

All articles from Materials Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Fizzy soda water could be key to clean manufacture of flat wonder material: Graphene

Whether you call it effervescent, fizzy, or sparkling, carbonated water is making a comeback as a beverage. Aside from quenching thirst, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have discovered a new use for these "bubbly" concoctions that will have major impact on the manufacturer of the world's thinnest, flattest, and one most useful materials -- graphene.

As graphene's popularity grows as an advanced "wonder" material, the speed and quality at which it can be manufactured will be paramount. With that in mind,...

Im Focus: Exotic quantum states made from light: Physicists create optical “wells” for a super-photon

Physicists at the University of Bonn have managed to create optical hollows and more complex patterns into which the light of a Bose-Einstein condensate flows. The creation of such highly low-loss structures for light is a prerequisite for complex light circuits, such as for quantum information processing for a new generation of computers. The researchers are now presenting their results in the journal Nature Photonics.

Light particles (photons) occur as tiny, indivisible portions. Many thousands of these light portions can be merged to form a single super-photon if they are...

Im Focus: Circular RNA linked to brain function

For the first time, scientists have shown that circular RNA is linked to brain function. When a RNA molecule called Cdr1as was deleted from the genome of mice, the animals had problems filtering out unnecessary information – like patients suffering from neuropsychiatric disorders.

While hundreds of circular RNAs (circRNAs) are abundant in mammalian brains, one big question has remained unanswered: What are they actually good for? In the...

Im Focus: RAVAN CubeSat measures Earth's outgoing energy

An experimental small satellite has successfully collected and delivered data on a key measurement for predicting changes in Earth's climate.

The Radiometer Assessment using Vertically Aligned Nanotubes (RAVAN) CubeSat was launched into low-Earth orbit on Nov. 11, 2016, in order to test new...

Im Focus: Scientists shine new light on the “other high temperature superconductor”

A study led by scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg presents evidence of the coexistence of superconductivity and “charge-density-waves” in compounds of the poorly-studied family of bismuthates. This observation opens up new perspectives for a deeper understanding of the phenomenon of high-temperature superconductivity, a topic which is at the core of condensed matter research since more than 30 years. The paper by Nicoletti et al has been published in the PNAS.

Since the beginning of the 20th century, superconductivity had been observed in some metals at temperatures only a few degrees above the absolute zero (minus...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Call for Papers – ICNFT 2018, 5th International Conference on New Forming Technology

16.08.2017 | Event News

Sustainability is the business model of tomorrow

04.08.2017 | Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Nagoya physicists resolve long-standing mystery of structure-less transition

21.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

Chronic stress induces fatal organ dysfunctions via a new neural circuit

21.08.2017 | Health and Medicine

Scientists from the MSU studied new liquid-crystalline photochrom

21.08.2017 | Materials Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>