SPE recognizes first injection molded thermoplastic energy absorber

The award-winning energy absorber is made with XENOY Polycarbonate/Polybutylene Terephthalate (PC/PBT) resin from SABIC.


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The first injection molded thermoplastic (PC/PBT) rear energy absorber for a vehicle bumper system, used on the 2003 Honda Element compact crossover SUV from Honda Motor Company, has been named the 2018 Automotive Innovation Awards Hall of Fame winner by the Automotive Division of the Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE, Bethel, CT, US).

The energy absorber, made with XENOY Polycarbonate/Polybutylene Terephthalate (PC/PBT) resin from SABIC (Riyadh, Saudi Arabia), replaced expanded polypropylene (EPP) foam energy absorbers in less package space at lower cost with better damageability performance.

To be considered for a Hall of Fame Award, an automotive plastic or composite component must have been in continuous service in some form for at least 15 years and broadly adopted in the automotive industry. This application certainly qualifies as over 80 million pounds of XENOY (PC/PBT) injection molded energy absorbers have been validated and launched on multiple vehicles, in both front and rear bumper system applications.

On Wednesday, November 7, 2018, representatives from Honda R&D Americas (Torrance, CA, US), Net Shape, now part of Shape Corp. (Grand Haven, MI, US), and SABIC will accept the award on behalf of the original team that worked to develop the first injection molded thermoplastic (PC/PBT) energy absorber for a vehicle bumper system on the 2003 Honda Element at the 48th-annual SPE Automotive Innovation Awards Gala, at the Burton Manor in Livonia, MI, US. 


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