Certain components within the Alfa Romeo Giulia’s turbocharged engine use heat-resistant glass fiber-based materials to help maximize performance and reduce heat soak.
Both the integrate air charge cooler and the hot-side turbo duct are constructed with a special glass fiber reinforced blow molding developed by German chemicals company BASF. The material helped Fiat Chrysler meet its long-term durability requirements for the parts, which are heated to high temperatures for long periods of time when the vehicle is in use.
The hot-side turbo duct is made of a 15 percent glass fiber reinforced blow molding with infrared welding parameters. Strong weld lines ensure the long-term durability of the duct and are crucial to its construction, as the part requires “many weld connections,” according to BASF. Similarly, the air intake manifold with its integrated charge air cooler is made with 35 percent glass fiber injection molding that ensure maximum reliability for a part that will be frequently subject to extreme temperatures.
BASF worked with Magneti Marelli, a business of Fiat Chrysler Automobiles (FCA), to develop the air intake manifold with integrated charge air cooler for the Alfa Romeo Giulia. The need for a material to withstand a 200°C continuous use temperature made this air intake manifold a prime candidate for Ultramid® Endure D3G7, a 35 percent glass fiber injection molding grade. The air intake manifold also required an excellent burst pressure performance; therefore, Magneti Marelli needed a material that offered reliable weld strength at elevated temperatures.
“After conducting numerous resin trials through molding, welding and rigorous validation testing, we were able to meet the significant demands on this application,” said Mary Anne Bueschkens, CEO of ABC Group, which developed the parts in partnership with BASF and FCA. “The part requires many weld connections. Our engineers worked closely with BASF’s material and joining experts to understand the unique requirements, allowing us to fine-tune our IR welding technology, and assuring success of the welding process for this demanding high-temperature duct.”