Autoneum launches Flexi-Loft for vehicle interiors – nonwoven industry magazine
The acoustic performance of passenger compartment components such as interior dashboards or carpets depends on the quality of noise reduction as well as the geometric adaptability and fill power of their material.
In order to achieve high acoustic performance with minimum weight and maximum durability, Autoneum continuously improves its portfolio of textile products. When it comes to components for the interior of the vehicle, for example, standard thermoplastic felts stand out for their sound absorption, robustness and environmental friendliness. However, since felt-based materials are generally less bulky and moldable than foam components, they require more weight to completely fill the areas of varying thickness between the component surface and the white body of the vehicle. In contrast, Autoneum’s Flexi-Loft technology is significantly lighter, more flexible and more adaptable than standard felts. In addition, the fiber-based material is versatile and clearly outperforms current foam products in terms of durability.
Thanks to its innovative blend of recycled cotton and polyester fibers, Flexi-Loft significantly reduces component weight while improving geometric adaptability and acoustic performance, especially in thin areas. Thanks to the specific properties of the fibers, Flexi-Loft allows precise adaptation to a wide variety of vehicle bodies, thus improving the soundproofing qualities of the respective product. Even at low weight, Flexi-Loft covers a wide range of material thicknesses, thus proving to be an ideal decoupling material for intricately shaped interior components such as interior dashboards and car mats. As a lightweight, flexible and durable alternative to standard felts and foams, Flexi-Loft stands out for its versatile application in combination with existing Autoneum technologies such as Hybrid-Acoustics and Prime-Light. In addition, the material helps reduce odors and dust inside the vehicle.
Overall, Flexi-Loft offers a unique combination of design freedom and increased durability. The lightweight fiber-based material is characterized by excellent environmental performance throughout the product lifecycle while providing the same benefits as less durable foam alternatives. Flexi-Loft consists of at least 50% recycled cotton fibers, and the clippings generated during the manufacturing process are collected, processed and then reused in the production of new felt blanks. In addition, the material is fully recyclable.
Autoneum is already using Flexi-Loft worldwide as an insulation for various carpets, interior dashboards and other acoustic components based on its Prime-Light technology. The application of the material as an effective decoupler in interior dashboards in Hybrid-Acoustics will be launched on the European market in 2023.