New Soy-lutions for Sustainability in Automotive Applications

Flanigan, Cynthia. (2009) New Soy-lutions for Sustainability in Automotive Applications. In: IGERT Seminar Series, 2008 - 2009, University of Massachusetts Amherst. (Unpublished)

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Using agricultural crops as material feedstock is becoming more prevalent as scientists search for alternative choices to petroleum based products. Ford Research and Advanced Engineering has developed a portfolio of sustainable materials derived from renewable sources such as corn, hemp and soybeans. Soybeans are one crop within North America that is economical and readily available for use in plastic applications. Recently, we have been evaluating the use of soy as reinforcement and resin in a variety of polymer matrices, including rubber, sheet molding compounds, and polyurethanes. Our main focus has been on using functionalized soybean oil in the manufacture and formulation development of flexible, polyurethane foams for seating applications. Soy-based foams reduce the environmental footprint compared with the manufacture of petroleum-based foams. Ford Motor Company has researched methods to synthesize soy polyols, reduce odor in the foam and to maximize soy content in foam formulations. We have demonstrated the feasibility of formulating and processing soy-based polyurethane systems that have the key properties required for automotive interior and seating foam applications. We will review the main steps required for moving the technology from a laboratory setting to production environment and launch of the soy technology in 2008 Mustang. We will discuss the technical and commercial challenges and benefits of implementing soy-based foam.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Other)
InterNano Taxonomy: Nanoscale Objects and Nanostructured Materials
Collections: IGERT Seminar Series
Depositing User: Rebecca Reznik-Zellen
Date Deposited: 12 Mar 2009 20:09
Last Modified: 23 Mar 2009 15:52

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