Optimisation and upscaling of self-cleaning surfaces for the automotive sector by combining tailored nanostructured machined injection tools and functional thermoplastic nanocompounds
Figure 1 Project Abbreviation – NANOCLEAN
Start date: 01.10.2009
End date: 30.09. 2012
Organisation name: MAIER, S.COOP.
RESEARCH GROUP University of Twente
Justus Eichstädt (Contact for additional information)
This research project is supported by the European Community in the Seventh Framework Programme - NMP for the NANOCLEAN project under grant agreement number CP-FP 229100-2.
Nanocompounds, self-cleaning surfaces, nanostructured materials, machine injection tools
The investigation of self-cleaning surface properties of plants (e.g. Lotus leaf) relieve significant attention in the 1990’s by describing nonwettable properties of biological surfaces.
Microscopically gained data of leaves from water repellent plants showed that surface roughness is one of the key features for the self-cleaning mechanism. This multi-leveled roughness consists of micro-scale and nano-scale structures.
Water falling on Lotus leaves beads up to an contact angle of 150°, which is then referred to as super hydrophobic. The water droplet will not wet the surface and roll off the leaves collecting dirt along the way.
Nature is often used as a source for inspiration for designing new engineered materials, systems and technologies. This project aims at mimicking the self-cleaning surface properties of a Lotus leaf to be used for production of water repelling plastic parts under industrial manufacturing conditions.
•Tailor-made micro/nanostructured surfaces onto injection moulds,
•Optimization of highly hydrophobic materials suitable for micro/nano-textured injection moulding technology,
•Design and assessment of injection moulding process and moulded components,
•Modeling and characterization of laser texture morphology,
•Assessment up-scaling of technology for industrial automotive components.
A combined approach of mass production techniques and high precision manufacturing techniques is capable to mass produce permanent super water repellent and self-cleaning plastic parts. A cross disciplinary approach combining, laser micro textures, chemical modifications and injection moulding techniques is used.
RESULTS SO FAR
•Development of ultra-fast laser based micro/nano texturing workstation (Lightmotif),
•Development of a model for machining parameter evaluation and optimization (University of Twente)
Figure 18 (left) Energy density profile of stitched scan-fields and (right) schematic diagram of the fluence domain requirements with a Gaussian fluence distribution under lateral displacement conditions.
•1st, 2nd and 3rd generations of multi-nanotextured injection moulding tools were manufactured (Maier, Lightmotif),
•Characterization of 1st, 2nd and 3rd Generation of textured moulds and injection molded plastic parts were carried out (University of Twente),
Figure 2 Scanning Electron Microscope image of laser texture on injection mould
•Setting up of injection moulding parameters for textured moulds (GAIKER and MAIER),
•Definition of automotive specification driven up-scaling (CRF and MAIER).
•3D texturing of injection mould for automotive components,
•Development of new plastic material with tailor-made enhanced hydrophobicity,
•Investigation of laser texture processes.
M. Groenendijk, NanoClean brochure, Lightmotif, Enschede (The Netherlands), 2012
J. Eichstädt, A.J. Huis in 't Veld, Simulation of energy density profiles for laser-induced surface phenomena, Industrial Laser Event 2012, University of Twente, Enschede, April, 17, 2012. EM, poster.
J. Eichstädt. Topographical characterization of laser textures, Industrial Laser Event, Enschede (The Netherlands), 2010.