UK Chemtech company Aqdot has developed a new PVC material with its AqFresh VOC capture technology specifically for the automotive interiors market.
The technology works by capturing VOCs from PVC and PU materials, to a level that means they can consistently pass the threshold of the VDA-270 assessment protocol for automotive interiors. This enables materials treated with the technology to score below the accepted 3.0 threshold level on the 1-6 scale, meeting the industry standard.
In the VDA-270 test, AqFresh powder was incorporated into either the PVC or the coating formulation and the trained panel rated the Volatile Organic Compound odor emissions from the jar containing the material.
The odor capture technology can be added to automotive interior materials and consists of cucurbiturils – barrel-shaped molecules with a hydrophobic cavity and polar portals. Their structure enables exceptionally tight capture and binding of unwanted molecules. The technology has been proven to capture the eight key VOCs found in automotive interiors: acetaldehyde, acrolein, benzene, ethylbenzene, formaldehyde, styrene, toluene and xylene.
According to the company, research shows that 79% of consumers experience malodors in their car. As well as the obvious sources such as poor ventilation, fumes and body odor, a key problem cited by car users is the leather and plastic smell particularly prevalent in new cars. Having commissioned a survey of over 500 global consumers in the USA, UK, France, Italy and China, Aqdot found that 86% of respondents felt malodor negatively affects their mood, and 69% are now more concerned than ever about indoor air quality.
Malodorous VOCs are not just an issue of customer satisfaction – many countries are introducing guidelines or legislation. For example, China has introduced legislation, under the heading ‘Limit of harmful substances of vehicle coatings – GB 24409-2020’, dictating the levels of VOCs permitted.
Under test conditions, AqFresh powder was placed side-by-side with polyvinyl chloride/polyurethane in a glass jar and a trained panel rated the VOC odor emissions from the jar. The VDA odor test is run by Aqdot using trained assessors selected according to ISO 8586 for their ability to discriminate and describe malodor. They are trained and assessed quarterly using validated polymeric standards provided by a qualified supplier.
For more details and to request a free white paper or free VDA-270 report on your coated material with AqFresh, visit the Aqdot website offer page here.