Basotect® melamine foam from BASF featured on Volkswagen engine covers

BASF’s sound-absorbing Basotect® TG melamine foam is now being used for the acoustic layer in the Volkswagen EA888 engine for the Jetta, Golf, Passat, Tiguan, and Beetle models produced in North America. Volkswagen chose Basotect®-based acoustic parts provided by the foam converter Rogers Foam of Somerville, MA, that are further assembled by the Tier 1 supplier of the engine cover, Exo-s, of Sherbrooke, Canada.

  • High-performance material combines low weight, high sound absorption and high temperature resistance
  • Quiet ride despite increased engine performance

“In order to meet the ever-tightening North American automotive fuel efficiency and emission standards, smaller, higher-performing and direct-injection engines are being used in today’s automotive manufacturing”, says Holli Woodard, Market Development Specialist for Basotect® in North America. “These engines create higher levels of heat and noise that impact the driving comfort. Car manufacturers and suppliers are increasingly looking for new materials to solve this challenge”. The engine cover developed by Exo-s and Rogers Foam using BASF’s Basotect® TG foam was able to meet VW’s needs.

Basotect® TG is the only thermoset melamine foam, which is specifically manufactured for thermoforming in order to make sophisticated three-dimensional components and customized elements for tight spaces.

Basotect® melamine foam from BASF featured on Volkswagen engine covers

Reduction of fuel consumption and CO2 emissions

The use of Basotect® on the engine cover helps to address multiple challenges faced by automotive manufacturers: It provides superior noise absorption, flame resistance and weight reduction in the high heat environment of the engine compartment.

Because of its open-cell, fine foam structure, the sound absorption values in the medium and high frequency ranges are very good. The use of a non-woven fleece covering the BASF foam helps increase the noise insulation over the whole range of frequencies. This acoustic insulation ensures Volkswagen drivers and passengers will have a superior driving experience.

Furthermore Basotect® makes the engine cover flame-retardant and prevents it from maintaining a flame. These fire resistant properties aid in Basotect®’s ability to meet the UL 94 V-0 fire rating. The BASF foam can withstand temperatures up to 460 ºF (240 °C) while maintaining its NVH properties.

With a density of only 9 kg/m3, Basotect® TG is also much lighter than conventional insulating materials used in under-hood applications, which is highly desirable as it reduces both fuel consumption and CO2 emissions.

A benchmark for small turbocharged engines

All parties worked together from the onset of this program specifically for production in North America. The EA888 engine cover is currently being manufactured for use in the VW facilities in Chattanooga, TN and Puebla, Mexico, with future plans to expand the EA888 engine cover line.

Volkswagen’s EA888 four cylinder engine has set the benchmark for small-displacement turbocharged engines. Designed to be lighter and more fuel-efficient, the new EA888 Gen 3 is turbocharged and the direct-injection four-cylinder’s additional low-speed torque has also enhanced the performance of the car.

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