Our composite bonding enables lightweight, durable body structure for Polestar 1 electric performance hybrid vehicle.
Combining multiple substrates to create lightweight yet durable vehicle bodies packed with distinctive design features can be a challenge. This is exactly what Polestar aimed to do when announcing its first innovative model—the Polestar 1 electric performance hybrid.
The team faced a number of significant challenges:
The Polestar 1 features an upper body of carbon fiber reinforced plastic (CFRP) and steel composite—10 times stronger and five times lighter than steel. This enables the weight reduction critical to better fuel economy and battery performance. But composites can be difficult to bond.
Carbon fiber also makes the vehicle body more rigid, creating more responsive handling—a must-have for Polestar’s performance market segment. Polestar’s engineers needed an adhesive that not only enabled a significant reduction in vehicle weight, but also reduced noise and protection against corrosion.
With the extensive use of carbon fiber to enable maximum stiffness, torsional rigidity and lightness, it was important to use the right adhesive to maintain design flexibility while achieving processing performance and sustainability goals.
Support from DuPont for the project during the first prototype builds in Sweden was critical to the success of the project. Similarly, development of a tailor-made heat-curing process at DuPont laboratories in Switzerland helped deliver a heat-accelerated formulation that was crucial to achieve the handling strength needed within a short process time.
Our application development experts helped by:
Establishing the bond width parameters and then partnering with Atlas Copco to determine the ideal position for the adhesive bead on the car body.
Assisting on site with the commissioning of the material pump station.
Providing on-site training to operators
Providing other process support, including correct pre-treatment of CFRP
We put our expertise in 2K polyurethane composite bonding—earned on platforms including Volvo, BMW, Audi, and Aston Martin—to work on Polestar’s revolutionary new vehicle.
Design features of the CFRP and steel composite components that comprised the SPA (scalable product architecture) body structure, resulted in bond gaps due to varying part tolerances. The bonding material effectively fills those gaps utilizing either hand held or robotic application equipment with cure and handling strength optimized to work in the Polestar assembly environment.
For Polestar, DuPont’s BETAFORCE™ 9050L composite bonding adhesive was the material of choice to bond the vehicle body.
BETAFORCE™ is ideal for joining carbon fiber and glass fiber composites as well as other dissimilar materials in a variety of lightweight designs, including modular assemblies. For Polestar, it was an excellent choice for bonding CFRP panels to steel composites.