Supporting Sustainable Mobility

Sustainability in the Automotive Industry | DuPont Polymers

Driving Sustainability Advances in the Automotive Industry

DuPont engineers and material science resources are collaborating with suppliers and manufacturers all over the world to help achieve better fuel economy and sustainability in the automotive industry.

The goal is to build cars, trucks and industrial machinery that are more fuel-efficient. We’re working together to meet these goals using new materials, and developing innovative approaches that help reduce dependence on fossil fuels and cut down on greenhouse gas emissions from cars, trucks and machinery or overall, including manufacture of the materials being used.

Fueling Lasting Change

DuPont works with vehicle-makers in several ways. We support replacing heavier metal and other plastic components with high performance elastomers and thermoplastics. DuPont materials are suitable for multiple car systems, including underhood and powertrain applications that must resist high heat and abrasive fuels and fluids.

We also have one of the broadest range of polymers made using non-food renewable sources to replace petrochemical based materials.

What to Do About CO2

It’s a simple concept: lighter cars require less fuel and produce fewer CO2 emissions. Many automotive manufacturers have made the reduction of CO2 emissions a corporate priority. In addition, some countries offer incentives to companies that participate in emissions trading. In either case, finding material substitutes that help reduce CO2 emissions can also reduce costs.

High Performance, Low Weight  

We help cars shed pounds by offering materials that car manufacturers can use to replace metal components with high performance polymers, without sacrificing performance. Some, like DuPontMinlon® mineral reinforced nylon resin and DuPontZytel® PLUS nylon resin, are used to engineer components  that can withstand extremely high temperatures, harsh chemicals, and intense pressures associated with automobile engines. Others, like DuPontDelrin® acetal resin, are used to make lighter functional components, such as levers and gears, as well as components for vehicle interiors, where resistance to high-impact loads is required.

Using Less Oil

Greater sustainability in the automotive industry is about more than just light weighting. DuPont is committed to developing materials that are renewably-sourced.  For instance, Sorona® EP thermoplastic polymer contains between 20% and 37% renewably sourced material (by weight) derived from non-food plant-based material. Another high performance solution is DuPontHytrel® RS renewably sourced thermoplastic polyester elastomer, which contains 35% to 65% renewably sourced material derived from non-food plant feedstocks. DuPontZytel® RS renewably sourced nylon resin is derived from castor oil.  All DuPont biopolymers are produced using less petroleum than conventional polymers, which helps reduce CO2 even further.

Reducing Friction and Energy Loss

DuPontVespel® parts and shapes are used to reduce wear and friction in demanding engine and powertrain applications that require high heat and chemical resistance. For example, self-lubricating Vespel® bushings can maintain consistent performance over the life of the EGR valve in diesel engines, helping achieve new emission standards.

Innovation Centers Worldwide

No organization or government can support sustainability in the automotive industry alone, so DuPont is working collaboratively with customers, partners and governments through innovation centers around the world. We’ve established automotive innovation centers in Seoul, South Korea; Pune, India; Nagoya, Japan; Geneva, Switzerland; Istanbul, Turkey; and Troy, Michigan in the United States.

Sustainability as Competitive Advantage

In a fast-changing, highly competitive landscape, DuPont is collaborating to innovate with materials makers, parts suppliers and manufacturers, to help achieve greater sustainability in the automotive industry. And we’re seeing results, in higher performance engines to interiors using finishes that incorporate renewably sourced materials.

In 2011, Ford, Fiat, and Toyota were all winners at the Society of Plastics Engineers “Most Innovative Use of Plastics” awards event. They all collaborated with DuPont engineers and used components that employed renewably sourced DuPont materials. DuPont can help you take on the challenges of how to improve sustainability through material selection in the automotive industry, and build the vehicles consumers, companies and governments want and need now.


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