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Essen, Germany, April 18, 2012
Lightweight cars save fuel and are therefore kinder to the environment. While this aspect is important for cars with conventional powertrains, weight is even more crucial for the growing market for electric vehicles. This is why PLEXIGLAS® glazing is so important at Evonik: It is 40 to 50 percent lighter than conventional glass, which makes it of great interest to car manufacturers. The advantages are immediately obvious. Weight savings apart, the excellent transparency of PLEXIGLAS® as well as its very high weathering resistance, pleasant acoustic properties, and outstanding formability, among other features, open up entirely new design possibilities not offered by conventional glazing. To cover the entire range of glazing for automotive construction, Evonik is pursuing two lines of development: monolithic and multi-layer systems based on PLEXIGLAS®. A 5 mm and also a 6 mm thick coated sheet has already received ECE R 43 certification for side and rear windows and roof glazing. PLEXIGLAS® glazing is being tested under practical conditions in a Lotus race car. This has been equipped with a windshield and side windows made from the highly transparent, weather-resistant, and lightweight material. The side windows have so far been used in many races without a hitch, and also the windshield has also passed the test of the first races with flying colors. “But of course we’re also conducting projects worldwide,” says Rudolf Blass, who is responsible for automotive glazing in the Acrylic Polymers Business Line. For example, our material is already being used in series production of the Chang’an, a small Chinese passenger car, as a glazing element in connection with the taillights, which are also of PLEXIGLAS®. Furthermore, Evonik’s PLEXIGLAS® replaces the traditional mineral glass in an e-car prototype of SAIC and reduces the weight of the fixed side screens up to 40-50%. This helps to reduce energy consumption and to improve the operating distance. And PLEXIGLAS® developers are naturally thinking ahead. IR-reflecting glazing and photovoltaic cells integrated into vehicle roofs, for example, are already a reality. Functional integration is the key term, and the possibilities here are far from exhausted.
Evonik Industries is a worldwide manufacturer of PMMA products sold under the PLEXIGLAS® trademark on the European, Asian, African and Australian continents and under the trademark ACRYLITE® in the Americas.
Evonik, the creative industrial group from Germany, is one of the world leaders in specialty chemicals. Its activities focus on the key megatrends health, nutrition, resource efficiency and globalization. Profitable growth and a sustained increase in the value of the company form the heart of Evonik’s corporate strategy. Evonik benefits specifically from its innovative prowess and integrated technology platforms. Evonik is active in over 100 countries around the world. In fiscal 2011 more than 33,000 employees generated sales of around €14.5 billion and an operating profit (EBITDA) of about €2.8 billion.
In so far as forecasts or expectations are expressed in this press release or where our statements concern the future, these forecasts, expectations or statements may involve known or unknown risks and uncertainties. Actual results or developments may vary, depending on changes in the operating environment. Neither Evonik Industries AG nor its group companies assume an obligation to update the forecasts, expectations or statements contained in this release.
PLEXIGLAS® glazing is lightweight and highly transparent:
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