The Project: Electric Hybrid Vehicle Composite Bonding for Volvo Polestar 1 with DuPont™
While developing the new electric hybrid vehicle Polestar 1, Volvo aimed to create a lightweight yet durable vehicle body with distinguished design features. Volvo sought a lightweight yet rigid body structure to enable excellent fuel economy, battery performance and responsive handling. They pursued this by designing an upper body made of carbon fibre reinforced plastic (CFRP) and steel composite – which is 10 times stronger and five times lighter than normal steel.
Composite bonding, specifically of CFRP, can be difficult without expert advice. This is why Volvo worked with DuPont™ to formulate an advanced solution for Polestar 1.
Volvo required an adhesive solution that:
- Reduced vehicle weight
- Protected against corrosion
- Maintained design flexibility
- Had gap-filling properties – Polestar 1’s CFRP and steel composite components contained varying gaps
- Achieved quick processability through hand-held or automatic application
- Was quickly developed under a tight deadline
DuPont™ representatives worked with Polestar 1 engineers to use BETAFORCE 9050L as the solution to meet all specified requirements. BETAFORCE 9050L is a structural adhesive capable of bonding CFRP panels to steel composites. This solution, along with its own tailor-made heat-curing process, was developed quickly in the Swiss DuPont laboratories, sufficiently meeting the tight deadlines of the Polestar 1 project. DuPont engineers also developed specific bond width parameters, enabling the ideal positioning of the adhesive on the body structure and meeting all parameters for curing, handling and assembly timeframes.
Through the use of BETAFORCE 9050L, the Polestar 1 was able to reduce wall thickness (and therefore vehicle weight), provide corrosion-resistance through gap-filling bonding of CFRP panels, and improve crash-worthiness through reducing noise, vibration and hardness. Additionally, the Polestar 1 assembly process now benefits from reduced complexity, due to primerless adhesion, and quick processing times due to fast acceleration capabilities. Furthermore, BETAFORCE 9050L provides great bead stability and torsional stiffness over operational time windows.
“The ability to use CFRP–steel composite construction bonded by DuPont adhesives helped reduce vehicle weight by 300 kg, while also meeting the high standards for noise reduction and corrosion control. With 50 meters of adhesive used on each vehicle, we are proud of the strong role we’ve played in the rollout of this innovative and exciting electric performance vehicle platform.” – Commented Dr. Andreas Lutz, R&D Director, Adhesives for DuPont.
The story of DuPont and Volvo Polestar 1 is a story of successful electric hybrid vehicle composite bonding.