Many types of molded foam are used in automotive applications.
Lightweight. With product weight becoming a leading concern, lower density expanded plastic foams are an ideal choice for rigid chassis replacement. Parts made from expanded polypropylene (for example) offer equivalent impact strength and toughness with 10 to 40 percent less weight than other classic chassis materials. It provides comparable impact strength with less excess weight.
Design flexibility. Energy management doesn’t have to mean big and bulky. With its high impact strength/density ratio, molded foam parts can be designed with thinner profiles and smaller shapes for excellence in impact protection and styling.
Economical. Expanded plastic foam is easily reclaimed during the parts manufacturing operations. Scrap content can be five to 10 percent with minimal changes in properties.
Recyclable. EPP parts are compatible with other olefinic component parts such as molded polypropylene (high tech, medical and automotive interior and exterior enclosures and panels) and thermoplastic olefin (TPO) fascias and cladding. More parts can be recycled without costly separation techniques.
Versatile. Expanded polypropylene can be molded as planks, shapes, or profiles, and molded with a textured PP surface and a resilient EPP foam core. With variable bead sizes, you can mold intricate shaped parts with smoother surfaces and thinner wall cross sections.
Resilient. Parts made with expanded polypropylene have excellent resiliency to absorb multiple impacts without loss of cushioning properties.
Chemical and heat resistance. Expanded polypropylene-based parts resist many common solvents and chemicals such as oils, gasoline and diesel fuels, and antifreezes. Expanded polypropylene-based parts withstand high temperatures up to 212F (100C) without warpage or changes in dimension.
EPP material physical properties > EPP material data (will open a separate pdf file)