Technical compounder Luxus' advanced lightweight scratch-resistant thermoplastics (PP) range Hycolene has met accelerated materials performance tests from Tier 1 moulder IAC.
The latest trials concluded the material validation process required for Hycolene as part of the €1.4m (£1.25m) Recyclite collaborative project, supported by the European Commission.
The testing looked to provide a theoretical equivalent of real-time ‘vehicle life' for Hycolene (grade 16818), to satisfy fellow project member Jaguar Land Rover's (JLR) engineering standard.
The chosen ‘A' class interior test component for this latest trials was a current JLR instrument panel.
The tests were managed by IAC's laboratory in Lincolnshire, and an independent testing house which compared the results against an industry standard thermoplastics grade.
Accelerated material tests were completed as auto manufacturers require all interior plastics components to be more resistant to sunlight and heat as part of an overall goal of achieving a 10-year vehicle life.
Weathering requirements have also become more severe as items such as larger, aerodynamic windscreen designs have increased the sunlight exposure of many vehicle interiors today.
Luxus technical director Dr Christel Croft said: “Firstly, we took panel gap measurements both pre- and post-tests to determine if there was any degree of component movement. UV resistance was also critical, with only minor fade allowed and no other colour tone change. “A non-uniform colour change was unacceptable in these trials – Hycolene 16818 passed all the agreed criteria.
“Any occurrence of tackiness; grain loss; blistering; distortion; cracking; crazing; fibre deterioration; wrinkling; waviness, milking or spotting would have led to a rejection. Along with our Recyclite project partners we are satisfied that Hycolene has once again exceeded expectations.”