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PTFE-free PC Compound Stifles BSR Noise in Auto Interiors

Image: Sabic PTFE-free PC/ABS
Buzz-squeak-rattle (BSR) reduction is critical in electric and hybrid vehicles because of the absence of source noise from powertrains.

Sabic has launched an unfilled, colorable PTFE-free polycarbonate/acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (PC/ABS) that reduces buzz-squeak-rattle (BSR) noise in automotive interiors. Internally lubricated LNP Lubriloy N2000 is a paintable, drop-in material that can significantly reduce friction and stick-slip behavior between molded parts to limit or prevent unwanted noise. The proprietary, compatibilized olefinic alloy is free of silicone and polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE).

“A quiet, smooth ride is a hallmark of automotive quality and luxury, but cabin sounds can be more noticeable in electric and hybrid vehicles due to the absence of source noise from their powertrains,” said Ed Williams, Senior Product Manager, LNP Compounds. “Our new LNP Lubriloy N2000 compound is highly effective at limiting buzz-squeak-rattle noise and eliminates the need for secondary applications, such as felts or tapes. This latest material innovation helps our customers provide a more enjoyable driving experience for consumers.”

Low COF in plastic-on-metal applications

Sabic’s lubricating technology is based on a fully compatibilized olefinic alloy. It enables the LNP Lubriloy N2000 compound to deliver a low coefficient of friction (COF) and excellent wear performance in plastic parts moving over metal and plastic surfaces. When evaluated using the BSR test VDA 230-206, Lubriloy N2000 compound demonstrated a risk priority number (RPN) of less than 3 versus non-modified PC/ABS materials that typically have values greater than 5. In addition to automotive interior parts — such as mirror housings and trim, cupholders, button guides, and heating-ventilation-air conditioning (HVAC) frames — the new material potentially can be used in consumer electronics applications where reduced friction or improved wear is required.

EU restrictions on PFOA

In July 2020, the European Commission placed limitations on the amount of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA), its salts, and PFOA-related substances that can be present in a material. This industrial surfactant was commonly used during the production of PTFE. Suppliers now must certify that materials containing PTFE fall below the recommended PFOA threshold (<25 ppb). With the LNP Lubriloy N2000 compound, manufacturers can now emulate the tribological performance of traditional lubricated materials while avoiding the use of PTFE and, therefore, any trace impurities from PFOA that may be present in PTFE.

To help designers create attractive automotive interiors, the new LNP compound offers molded-in color in custom shades that can be difficult to achieve with other commercially available compounds utilizing solid lubrication packages like graphite or molybdenum. Paintability is an additional feature of the LNP Lubriloy N2000 compound and addresses the challenge often found with traditional silicone-based materials, since the silicone oil can cause surface defects.

To further assist automotive designers, Sabic is also developing next-generation lubricated LNP materials in stylish deep glossy black colors.

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