Innovative composite materials application in the design of seats and interior parts

Gerardo Alvino, University of Windsor


The constant increase of petroleum price and the always more strict regulations regarding the emissions level and environmental impact are today the main leading factors that drive worldwide car makers to make efforts in the research of lightweight solutions in order to decrease the fuel consumption and, as a consequence, to reduce the CO2 amount released in the atmosphere. In this work the attention is focused on innovative materials, such as thermoplastic composites due to their low density, easiness of manufacturing and possibility to be recycled. The case study is geared towards the design of interior components, and in particular to the substitution of a current rear seat back steel structure, meeting stringent weight and stiffness requirements. Abaqus software is used in the conduction of Finite Element Analysis of the component. Cost and manufacturing aspects of the proposed design solution are investigated on order to provide a detailed feasibility overview.