Manufacturer launches new bushes material

A concept image of a car seat in grey with yellow bushes at all points where a bush would be use, made of iglidur H5 high-performance plastic

HIGH 5 The new iglidur H5 high-performance plastic developed by igus is used in bushes for various components components

9th December 2022

By: Halima Frost

Senior Writer


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High-performance plastic products manufacturer igus launched its new range of alternative bushes for the automotive sector at this year’s manufacturing, energy and logistics trade show, Hannover Messe 2022.

The bushes are made from igus’ new trademarked iglidur H5 high-performance plastic, which has been developed at the igus head office in Cologne, Germany, and form part of the company’s iglidur H range.

“iglidur H5 is the fifth member of the iglidur H series,” says igus South Africa MD Ian Hewat.

Bushes are used for components such as engine compartments and windscreen wipers, besides others, where traditional materials do not always stand the test of time.

Bushes in the chassis or gearbox, convertible top systems or pedals of vehicles should be robust, durable and corrosion-free, he adds.

The new material of the bushes is formulated to withstand temperatures of up to 150 °C while being chemical-resistant to typical applications such as coolant and water pumps found in the automotive sector.

The iglidur H5 material has much more flexibility than typical ceramic bushes or carbon-graphite bearings, which results in an overall noise reduction in the application and a more cost-effective solution.

“Previous materials in the product range were considered to be more durable and fail-safe in automotive engineering than most plain bearings made from other materials, including metal composites and conventional plastics.

"With the new material, we have now raised the bar even higher,” says Hewat.

Long-term tests undertaken at its in-house test laboratory, in Cologne, have shown that the iglidur H5 material is 30% more wear-resistant than its predecessor, and has also significantly improved impact resistance and flexibility, owing to its fibre-reinforced construction, which complements the materials in the H range.

This improvement was achieved by further optimising the formulation and including added fibres and filling materials to the base polymer, says Hewat.

Automotive engineering has many possible applications for the new plain bearings, such as windscreen wipers, which are expected to function reliably under heavy loads such as heavy rainfall and hail, he adds.

The new material used for the bushes enables the plain bearings to withstand high forces, edge loads, impacts and shocks, even under continuous load.

It is also resistant to road salt, chemicals, fuels, oil and high temperatures of up to 200 °C, consequently also making it suitable for components in the engine compartment such as water and coolant pumps.

"iglidur H5 is a refined material for current and future requirements in the automotive sector. However, the new polymer plain bearings can also be used in pumps in chemical plants and other industrial applications,” explains Hewat.

Although relatively new to the market, the iglidur H5 has been well received by the automotive sector, which continuously aims to improve designs, be more efficient in terms of its quality and reduce the weight of the bushes, as well as improve the life of components in general.

“We also provide special polymers for three-dimensional printing, where printed parts and components maintain the same characteristics as factory-made items,” he concludes.

Edited by Zandile Mavuso
Creamer Media Senior Deputy Editor: Features


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