Metal-effect compound dresses up talc-filled PP engine cover


The engine cover on the Ford Fusion Hybrid utilizes a metallic-effect compound from PolyOne that mimics the luster of a painted polymer without the extra energy requirements and VOCs (volatile organic compounds) that painting can produce. Injection molded by MPC Inc. (Walworth, WI), a Ford World Excellence-recognized supplier, the engine cover utilizes PolyOne's Maxxam FX Metal for a clean finish and reduced carbon footprint.

The engine cover on the Ford Focus hybrid utilizes a talc-filled polypropylene from PolyOne with that company's Maxxam FX Metal effect.
The engine cover on the Ford Fusion hybrid utilizes a talc-filled polypropylene from PolyOne with that company's Maxxam FX Metal effect.

Ford required the talc-filled polypropylene (PP) compound fulfill several requirements, including a melt flow rate of 3-11 g/10 min., talc content from 17-23%, minimum flexural modulus of 2.8 MPa, Izod impact strength of 1.7 kJ/m2, and, given its location under the hood and above the engine, a heat-deflection temperature of 56°C. Also, due to the necessary aesthetics, the part needed to be devoid of knit lines. Knit lines were avoided by having the melt flow fronts come together along the edges of the cover. By eliminating painting, MPC estimates that it saves approximately $800,000/yr, with that figure including rates charged by an outside vendor, and the cost of transporting parts to and fro.

Founded in 1972, MPC supplies extruded, injected, and blowmolded thermoplastic components and assemblies for the automotive industry. In addition to its Walworth, WI headquarters, MPC operates a sales office in Southfield, MI with an additional manufacturing plant Mexico.

 

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