Applications of Aluminium foams in automotive industry, mainly in crash boxes. Project

Applications of Aluminium foams in automotive industry,
mainly in crash boxes.
Examples of different applications:
Students will investigate the applications of aluminium foams in the automotive industry,
specifically for the crash absorbers located in the front and rear of the car.
Cars are usually equipped with two crash absorbers behind each bumper beam (2 in the front
bumper and 2 in the rear).They absorb around 6 kJ (100kN in 60 mm) in impacts at 15 km/h (in
cars of 1.200 kg). The objective of the project is to discover the advantages and disadvantages
of nanonickel coated aluminium foams.
Project Brief:
The goal of the project is to provide extensive research and a broad vision into the application
of these materials and to suggest possible solutions designed by the students themselves.
Students will :
1. Investigate the state of the art of aluminium foams in general in different areas ,not only in
the automotive industry
2. Study the different types of aluminium foams.
3. Look at the existing methods for improving aluminium foams (mainly nanonickel coatings
and similar solutions)
4. Create a table of advantages and disadvantages of every type of foam, area of application,
types of applications (sound absorption, structural damping, energy absorber, electromagnetic
shield, thermal insulation,.)
5. Study existing designs or applications (concurrence and existing patents)
6. Develop different designs (two) and methods of making crash boxes (combined with other
materials such as plastic, metal, hybrid,...). Think how to connect crash boxes with bumper
beams and longitudinal members. Information on crash tests will be provided. Students will be
able to witness a real crash test with conventional crash boxes
6. Find different companies capable of designing and manufacturing this type of components.
7. Simulate the possible solutions/designs (levels of energy absorbed, per unit of volume; curve
Force/displacement, and other parameters,...)
8. Evaluate the possibility of manufacturing the parts and Estimate the cost of the solutions
9. Look into the possibility of applying this in other parts of the car.
10. Draw conclusions of this type of applications. Appraisal of the project.
Name: Centro Técnico de SEAT, S.A.
Address: Autovía A2 – KM 585; E-8760 Martorell – Pcia. Barcelona
Contact person:
Project team:
Number of students: 6 students
Students speciality:
X Business Management
X Mechanical engineering
 Electrical engineering
 Electronics engineering
X Chemical engineering (Materials engineering)
 Computer engineering.
 Telecommunications engineering.
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