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26th October 2016
Advanced lightweight scratch-resistant thermoplastics (PP) range Hycolene™ engineered by Lincolnshire based technical compounder Luxus, has recently satisfied rigorous accelerated materials performance trials with Tier 1 moulder IAC*. These latest trials conclude the material validation process required for Hycolene as part of the €1.4m Eco-innovation funded Recyclite commercialisation project (
The aim was to provide a theoretical equivalent of real-time ‘vehicle life’ for Hycolene (grade 16818), to satisfy fellow project member, Jaguar Land Rover’s engineering standard. The materials trials followed previous positive performance, delivering high scratch-resistance; lightweight benefits and a rapid cycle time in the spring of this year.

The chosen ‘A’ class interior test component for this latest trials was a current Jaguar Land Rover instrument panel (IP), which was exposed to in market service temperatures expected for IP assemblies, for several weeks ending in June 2016. The tests were managed by IAC’s laboratory and an independent test house which compared the results against an industry standard thermoplastics grade.
Accelerated material tests were completed as auto manufacturers require all interior plastics components to be more resistant to sunlight and heat as part of an overall goal of achieving a 10 year vehicle life. Weathering requirements have also become more severe as larger, aerodynamic windshield designs for example, have increased the sunlight exposure of many vehicle interiors today.
Luxus technical director Dr Christel Croft explains the trial process: “Firstly, we took panel gap measurements both pre and post-tests to determine if there was any degree of component movement. UV resistance was also critical, with only minor fade allowed and no other colour tone change. A non-uniform colour change was unacceptable in these trials – Hycolene 16818 passed all the agreed criteria.
“Any occurrence of tackiness; grain loss; blistering; distortion; cracking; crazing; fibre deterioration; wrinkling; waviness; milking or spotting would have led to a rejection. We along with our Recyclite project partners are satisfied that Hycolene has once again exceeded expectations.”           
Peter Middleton, CBU director at IAC, adds: “We are pleased that Hycolene has proved to be a fully developed and durable composite able to meet the requirements of this trial. We believe this composite now has the potential to be successful at full commercial scale for auto manufacturers that demand advanced lightweight and scratch performance in either sustainable recycle content or virgin grades for the vehicle’s life.”

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*International Automotive Components (IAC)
Supporting image – Dr Christel Croft, Technical Director, Luxus

Luxus Ltd    
UK leading independent technical plastics recycling and compounding company Luxus has been developing highly specified thermoplastics compounds based on prime and recycled feedstocks for over 50 years. Luxus is a key supplier to the major names in the global auto industry and it was the first and still is the only UK business to achieve approval for its recycled grades in car interior trims.
Luxus also offers specialist ‘closed loop’ and ‘open loop’ recycling services to manage ‘end of life’ post industrial and consumer waste for the retail transit packaging, construction and local authority wheel bin markets.

Published 26 Oct 2016 Back to previous
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