Canadian Manufacturing

Sheet steels provide 30% weight reduction in auto structures: study

Independent engineering firm EDAG commissioned by NanoSteel Company to conduct study

PROVIDENCE, R.I.—A study commissioned by a United States-based nano-structured steel materials firm has found the company’s sheet steels can achieve a 30 per cent weight reduction in automotive structures.

The NanoSteel Company, which commissioned independent engineering firm EDAG, Inc., to conduct the study, claims its Advanced High Strength Steel (AHSS) allows for a reduction of weight in the BIW structure of a mass market sedan of close to one-third.

“We are very encouraged by the results of our study with EDAG,” NanoSteel president and CEO David Paratore said in a statement.

“The findings demonstrate that our alloys will address customer requirements across a significant proportion of structural parts. As we work to conclude our production trials, this assessment provides a blueprint for identifying specific opportunities for parts conversion.”

According to NanoSteel, EDAG utilized the same methodology and architecture of the existing National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) Light Weight Vehicle BIW design; the result of a comprehensive redesign of a 2011 Honda Accord that in simulation met North American performance and safety targets while optimizing for weight savings.

When applying NanoSteel’s AHSS to the NHTSA Light Weight Vehicle design, EDAG calibrated material gauges and design parameters to ensure the vehicle met crashworthiness criteria, as well as noise, vibration and harshness (NVH) requirements.

The results showed a 30 per cent (100 kg/220 lbs.) weight reduction in BIW versus the baseline 2011 Honda Accord and a 10.5 per cent (27 kg/60 lbs.) weight reduction from the NHTSA Light Weight Vehicle design.

“Once commercially available, NanoSteel’s AHSS will provide unique mechanical properties to automotive OEMs offering attractive options for design and material choices to reduce structural weight,” said Harry Singh, EDAG’s executive program manager on the study.

NanoSteel’s three classes of AHSS were used to replace crush zone parts that require high energy absorption, deep draw parts with significant complexity and structural parts such as B-pillars and cross-members where strength is paramount to protect the passenger.

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