Fuel pipe clip made from exotic material beats ESD problem
23 July 2012
Jet Press was recently approached by a major supplier to the European automotive industry to provide a plastic clip to secure a fuel pipe that was also capable of earthing the pipe.
this earthing property was necessary in order to prevent static charge accumulation.
The solution developed and provided by Jet Press involved the use of carbon nanotubes - tube-shaped carbon cylinders, about one ten-thousandth of the thickness of human hair. When dispersed in the main polymer mix (in this case, impact modified Nylon 66) they impart electrical conductive properties to the moulded product.
Getting the best from these modern materials required moulding techniques that had to be specially modified and controlled to make the part with a constant conductivity.
"Products manufactured in this way offer major advantages over other conductive solutions based on carbon black, carbon fibres or metals. They provide, a decreased risk of chemical contamination, homogeneous electrical conductivity at low loading, processing benefits, elimination of residual voltage hot spots, decreased weight of the final part, and retention of key mechanical properties" explains Jet Press technical manager, Martin Belcher.
"In this particular application, a metal clip would risk damage to the fuel line and would need a secondary fixing such as a screw to hold the clip in place. This unique solution was able to provide the customer with all the properties they required of the product, at the lowest in-place cost."
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