Recently, there are more news about new energy vehicles. It is not difficult to see that the world’s major automakers are accelerating the research and development of new lightweight materials and manufacturing processes.
With the environmental protection and energy crisis is becoming more and more prominent, new energy vehicles lightweight become an important trend for future development.
According to “Made in China 2025”, lightweight materials will become the focus of industrialization, and 30% weight reduction of the whole vehicle will be achieved by 2025.
Compared with other materials, melamine foam is widely used in the field of electric vehicles due to its outstanding advantages of light weight, sound absorption and heat insulation.
Melamine foam combines multiple talents in one
Melamine resin foam, also known as melamine foam. When viewed under a microscope, it is filled with a three-dimensional reticulated cross-linked structure, similar to animal bones and spiders. As a result, melamine foam offers good support and shock absorption.
In addition, it has a big feature: the open cell rate is more than 99%. Therefore, compared with traditional polyethylene, polypropylene, polyurethane and other foam materials, melamine foam has higher thermal stability and cold resistance, and excellent sound absorption and noise reduction, heat insulation and heat preservation performance. It is known as a new environmentally friendly material of the 21st century with great prospects for development.
List a few of its advantages:
- Good acoustic performance
- Good thermal insulation properties
- Light weight
- Flame resistant – no need to add fire retardant additives
- Physical properties remain unchanged over a wide temperature range
High sound absorption
Melamine foams up to 95% open cell ratio, so that sound waves can more easily and effectively enter the deep layers of the foam body, and then transformed into grid vibration to be consumed and absorbed, and can effectively eliminate reflected waves. Especially for the medium and high frequency noise has more outstanding absorption characteristics.
High flame retardant
The molecule itself contains three cyano groups and its nitrogen content is as high as 70%, which releases a large amount of water and carbon dioxide at high temperatures and forms a protective layer of nitride, effectively preventing the spread of flame.
Without adding flame retardant, it can reach the standard of B1 grade low flammability material stipulated by DIN4102 of Germany, and UL 94-V-0 grade high flammability material standard of American Insurance Association. It also meets the fire certification of EU BS6853, NFF16-101 and DIN5510, and is in line with China’s GBIT8624-2006 B1 grade flame retardant standard.
Sufficiently open cell three-dimensional grid structure system, grid length to diameter ratio (L/D) between 10-20. The special precise three-dimensional grid structure of melamine foam can effectively prevent air convection heat transfer, and with its low thermal stability, it has good heat insulation and heat preservation effect.
High temperature resistance
Compared with traditional polyethylene, polypropylene and polyurethane foam with lower cross-linking degree, melamine foam can work stably in the temperature zone between -180°C and 200°C for a long time, and can withstand high temperature of 240°C for a short time.
The weight of the product is 4-12kg/m³, which is one of the lightest foams in the world.
It can work stably for a long time in the temperature range from -180°C to +240°C, and can withstand the highest temperature of +240°C and the lowest temperature of -180°C.
Melamine foam and new energy vehicles get a new spark
The advantage of melamine foam is that it greatly improves the light weight, NVH and safety of new energy vehicles.
Advantage 1: Light weight, energy reduction and emission reduction.
Relevant studies have found that: pure electric vehicle weight reduced by 10kg, range increased by 2.5km; and body weight increased by 10%, electric vehicle single charge range will be reduced by 8%. Lightweighting reduces the overall weight of the car, thus reducing energy consumption and increasing the single-charge range.
And melamine foam is known as one of the lightest foams in the world. Its opening rate is 99% and the three-dimensional network cross-linked structure system is more like the hollow skeleton of a bird, with a bulk density of only 4-12kg/m³. In addition to reducing its own weight by 90%, it also greatly reduces the weight of automobiles to meet the growing demand for weight reduction and emission reduction.
Advantage 2: Excellent insulation performance
In new energy vehicles, when driving at high speed or high power output, the motor will generate a lot of heat, and these temperatures are usually between 80°C-120°C. Therefore, good heat dissipation and insulation design is needed for these key components.
The melamine foam has up to 99% open cell ratio, air fills inside the foam material and full heat exchange takes place inside, which minimizes heat accumulation in the material. The thermal conductivity is 0.022-0.036W/(m-K), which also means that it has lower thermal conductivity and insulates heat transfer.
Advantage 3: High sound absorption performance
The noise of new energy vehicles mainly comes from motor vibration, wheel and ground friction, air whistling, body resonance and so on. At present, automobile manufacturers mainly use sound-absorbing materials to separate and absorb noise as a noise reduction measure.
Melamine foam can absorb sound waves and convert them into weak thermal energy, reducing sound propagation and lowering noise inside the car; another part of the sound waves will be reflected or refracted by the foam, forming a soundproof barrier, which can also block the sound propagation.
Advantage 4: High fire resistance
Electric vehicles generate high temperatures in components such as battery packs and electronic control systems, so they require materials with excellent fire-retardant and fire-resistant properties.
Melamine foam has a flame retardant rating of B1, which means it is a flame-retardant material. In the event of a fire, the material does not melt or produce burning droplets when it comes into contact with flames, and the foam simply chars and produces a small amount of smoke.
In addition, it can effectively inhibit the production of smoke and harmful gases, and has good fire resistance.
Advantage 5: Shock absorption and pressure resistance
Melamine foam’s unique three-dimensional reticulated cross-linked structural system is similar to the honeycomb structure of a beehive.
It can make use of its own net-like structure to disperse vibration waves and achieve good shock absorption, providing strong support and good rebound recovery for new energy vehicles.
Advantage 6: Good environmental protection
As melamine foam does not require the use of Freon and other harmful substances in the production process, it is less polluting to the environment. In addition, it is highly recyclable and can be reused, reducing waste of resources and environmental pollution.
Melamine foam in other industries
In addition to the automotive industry, melamine foam is also quite widely used in other areas.
The 57,000 square meter Hefei Grand Theater in Anhui Province, with a total investment of about 650 million yuan, also has melamine foam inside.
The melamine foam is wrapped around the top of the hydrostatic box of the base structure that supports the rows of theater seats, and due to its good sound absorption effect, it reduces the sound on reflective surfaces and echoes caused by multiple reflections. It also provides excellent thermal insulation, ensuring that cool air flows through the air ducts underneath the theater seats to keep them cool.
Soilless culture medium
1g of ordinary polyurethane foam absorbs 30g of water, while 1g of melamine foam absorbs 300g of water, which is 10 times more absorbent than polyurethane foam.
Melamine foam can also be used as a substrate for soilless culture. In addition to strong water retention, but also has anti-aging, antibacterial, stable performance, can be soaked in nutrient solution for a long time without deformation and aging. Compared with ordinary sponges, melamine foam has an open pore structure and huge internal porosity, which has a good application prospect in the field of soilless culture.
Transportation in harsh conditions
A high-speed train travels on the sands of Medina and Mecca in Saudi Arabia, where the extreme temperature differences between day and night pose a huge challenge in terms of train construction and material selection.
Instead, melamine foam resin is used for sound and heat insulation. The fire-resistant and heat-insulating foam is used to cover the interior walls and ceilings of the carriages, providing passengers with optimal acoustics and balanced temperature variations inside the carriages.
Overall, melamine foam, as a new type of material for new energy vehicles, is widely used in thermal insulation, battery pack insulation, sound insulation and noise reduction, and its advantages are not available in other materials.
And with the development and innovation of science and technology, melamine foam is expected to get more applications in automobile field in the future. For example, automatic driving, intelligent transportation and so on, I believe that the future prospects for the development of broader.
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