The renewably-sourced long-chain nylon was chosen in preference to competitive grades of PA12 on the basis of its superior temperature resistance and long-term aging performance in biodiesel. The extruded, monolayer fuel line from Hutchinson is already in use on commercial new turbo and multijet diesel engines used on several Fiat vehicles, including the Fiat 500, Panda, Punto, Lancia Delta, Alfa Romeo MiTo and Giulietta.
Fuel lines used with both diesel and biodiesel are produced using renewably-sourced DuPont™ Zytel® RS PA1010 by the fluid transfer system supplier Hutchinson SRL of Rivoli, Italy, and debut on all new turbo and multijet diesel engines used on several Fiat vehicles, including the Fiat 500, Panda, Punto, Lancia Delta, Alfa Romeo MiTo and Giulietta.
As well as seeking to increase the use of renewably-sourced polymers to reduced dependence on fossil fuels, automotive manufacturers, OEMs and materials suppliers are modifying engine and fuel systems to run efficiently on the latest generation of biofuels, including biodiesel.
Components for such systems must resist the chemically-aggressive biofuels, temperature extremes and mechanical stresses for the lifetime of the vehicle. This specific Zytel® RS grade based on PA1010, which contains more than 60% renewably sourced ingredient by weight, offers properties typical of flexible polyamides with additional benefits such as superior high temperature resistance when compared to materials such as PA 12, high chemical resistance and low permeability to fuel and gases.
It is suitable for a range of extrusion applications including fuel lines, hydraulic hoses, corrugated tubes, transmission oil cooler hoses and pneumatic tubes. “We were seeking a polymer for our fuel line application that was preferably renewably-sourced, for a more sustainable solution, and was able to provide the best aging stability in biodiesel,” explains Katia Rossi, development manager at Hutchinson. “We considered a number of flexible polyamides, including PA12 as they had previously been specified for similar fuel line systems, but material testing showed Zytel® RS PA1010 to meet our requirements. It combines, for example, superior temperature resistance to PA12 with the best resistance to biodiesel at high temperatures.” Data on aging performance in biodiesel was obtained by immersing the materials in the most common biodiesel – rapeseed methyl ester (RME) – at 125 °C (257 °F) for 1,000 hours and measuring retained mechanical properties. The B30 biodiesel used for testing is made up of 30 per cent biofuel from rapeseed and recycled vegetable oil and 70 per cent standard diesel and is suitable for many diesel cars. By specifying the DuPont material for its fuel line for diesel engines, Hutchinson gains a longer-lasting solution that is also market leading in terms of its renewably-sourced content.
“With more than 60% by weight, this Zytel® RS grade based on PA1010 has one of the highest levels of renewably-sourced content currently available for a high performance nylon,” confirms Mario Delbosco, development programs manager at DuPont Performance Polymers. The renewable carbon in PA1010 comes from sebacic acid, which in turn is derived from castor oil. The successful adoption of renewably-sourced Zytel® nylon for the fuel line, which is already in commercial use on diesel-engined cars, has encouraged Hutchinson to extend the application to other automotive manufacturers in Europe and beyond as well as other fuel system applications.
Hutchinson is a subsidiary of the Total Group with representations in Europe, America and Asia, and is one of the world’s leading suppliers to the automotive industry. The product portfolio includes components for vibrations technologies, drivetrain systems, sealants and adhesives, fluid transfer systems (low and high pressure), body parts and sealing systems as well as precision seals and molded parts.
DuPont Performance Polymers is committed to working with customers throughout the world to develop new products, components and systems that help reduce dependence on fossil fuels and protect people and the environment. With more than 40 manufacturing, development and research centers throughout the world, DuPont Performance Polymers uses the industry’s broadest portfolio of plastics, elastomers, renewably sourced polymers, filaments and high-performance parts and shapes to deliver cost-effective solutions to customers in aerospace, automotive, consumer, electrical, electronic, industrial, sporting goods and other diversified industries.
DuPont (NYSE: DD) has been bringing world-class science and engineering to the global marketplace in the form of innovative products, materials, and services since 1802. The company believes that by collaborating with customers, governments, NGOs, and thought leaders we can help find solutions to such global challenges as providing enough healthy food for people everywhere, decreasing dependence on fossil fuels, and protecting life and the environment. For additional information about DuPont and its commitment to inclusive innovation, please visit www.dupont.com.
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