It may be impossible to make auto parts with wood

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It may not be possible to make auto parts with wood instead of steel

Abstract: in ancient times, the ancients used wood and mortise and tenon structures to build houses and vehicles. Even if they were hundreds of years or thousands of years, these buildings were still solid. Later, people began to use steel and other materials instead of wood

it is reported that at present, automobile manufacturers all over the world are making efforts to manufacture light vehicles, and some Japanese automobile suppliers are turning to wood, which seems unlikely, to replace steel. Japanese researchers and auto parts manufacturers said that the weight of materials made of wood pulp accounted for only one fifth of steel, but its strength and hardness were more than five times that of steel. In the coming decades, cellulose nanofibers (CNF) are likely to become a substitute for steel. This kind of fiber based on trees can make cars and electronic components lighter and stronger

if the cost is reduced and popularized, it is expected to rewrite the pattern of the material industry. Although it faces the competition of carbon based materials, it still has a long way to go in terms of commercial feasibility

for automobile manufacturers, reducing the weight of vehicles is extremely critical, so now electric vehicles have become the mainstream of major manufacturers. Batteries are expensive but crucial components, so the reduction of vehicle weight means that fewer batteries are needed to power the vehicle, saving costs

Masanori matsushiro, project manager in charge of Toyota body design, said: "lightweight is a permanent problem for us. However, we must also solve the problem of high manufacturing costs before we can use new materials with lighter weight in batch vehicles."

researchers at Kyoto University and major parts suppliers, such as Denso, Toyota's largest supplier and daikyonishikawa, are studying plastics combined with cellulose nanofibers, which are made by decomposing wood pulp fibers into hundreds of microns (thousandths of a millimeter)

cellulose nanofibers have been widely used in various products from inks to transparent displays, but their potential use in automobiles has been realized through the "Kyoto process", that is, kneading chemically treated wood fibers in plastic and decomposing them into nanofibers at the same time, reducing the production cost to about one fifth of other processes

auto parts, auto materials, materials, Toyota

Professor h of Kyoto University, who led the research, expects to exceed 5million iroaki Yano by 2020. In an interview with Reuters, he said, "this is the lowest cost and highest performance of cellulose nanofiber applications. This is why we focus on the use of Auto parts and fly soybeans due to their sufficient supply and low price."

Kyoto University and auto parts suppliers are currently developing a prototype vehicle based on cellulose nanofiber components, which will be completed in 2020

Yukihiko ISHINO, spokesman of daikyonishikawa, said, "we have been using plastics as a substitute for steel, and we hope that cellulose nanofibers can expand the possibility of achieving this goal." Toyota and Mazda are one of hikawa's customers of daikyonis, whose quality determines the value of equipment

other automakers are also using other lightweight alternatives. BMW uses carbon fiber reinforced polymers (CFRPs) in its I3 compact electric vehicles and 7 series models. High strength steel aluminum alloys are currently the most widely used lightweight products because they are cheap and recyclable. The curb weight of BMW I3 is only 2755 pounds. The model is built based on the "lifedrive structure", which is equipped with an aluminum chassis and a carbon fiber reinforced plastic cockpit. Hiroaki

yano, a professor at Kyoto University, said his research was inspired by the photos of "spruce geese". Hercules seaplane (also known as Spruce Goose), is a U.S. billionaire entrepreneur Howard? Howard Hughes completed the timber freighter in 1947, which was then the largest aircraft in the world. The aircraft has a length of 66.6 meters, a height of 9.15 meters, a wingspan of 97.54 meters, and a takeoff weight of 181.4 tons. The original design can carry 500-700 people

he said, "I think if Howard Hughes can find a way to build large aircraft with wood, why don't we use wood to make a material as strong as steel."

at present, the production cost of a kilogram of cellulose nanofibers is about 1000 yen (US $9). Yano's goal is to halve this cost by 2030, which he believes will make cellulose nanofibers an economically viable product because it will be combined with plastics and as competitive as high-strength steel and aluminum alloys (currently costing about $2 per kilogram)

industry experts predict that the price of carbon fiber will drop to about $10 per kilogram by 2025

analysts believe that in the future, high-strength steel and aluminum alloy will become more popular substitutes, considering that component manufacturers need to overhaul their production lines and find control system software to provide a way to fix new materials such as cellulose nanofibers on other automotive components for the Windows XP operating system platform

Anthony Vicari, applied materials analyst at lux research in Boston, said: if Yano's prediction proves to be correct, it will be a major event. But now, it is still a very big 'if'

in the autumn of 2012, Japanese paper producer Prince paper cooperated with Professor Hiroyuki Yano of Kyoto University and others to develop a new resin with cellulose nanofiber content of more than 10%. Compared with the past, the resin material used in a car can be reduced by about 20kg, so that the car is 20kg lighter

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