A crank shaft cover with integrated oil seal in the new Volkswagen MDB-4 diesel engine platform is made with a 50 percent glass filled polyamide 4/10 that is 70 percent derived from renewable resources, and is totally carbon neutral from cradle to grave.
The part is injection molded in a two-component Engel turntable press with liquid silicone rubber in a tool designed and manufactured by Elmet.
The two primary functions of the component are to maintain a seal between the engine block and oil sump and to maintain a seal between the crank shaft and cover. Dimensional stability is required at operating temperatures ranging from -40°C to 150°C, with excursions to 170°C. The component must also be resistant to diesel fuel and engine oil.
It’s described as the world’s first sustainable crank shaft cover.
Compared to aluminum die cast covers, the part is 25 percent less expensive and 50 percent lighter. It is 2.5 percent lighter than competing polyamide (nylon) versions. Production run across the VW platform is estimated at around 2.5 million per year.
The resin designation is EcoPaXX Q-HG10 from DSM. Introduced about seven years ago, EcoPaXX has renewable content that is derived from tropical castor bean plants. The component is molded by Kaco in an automated cell.
The part is an entry in this year’s Society of Plastics Engineers (SPE) Automotive Innovation Competition. Winners will be announced at a banquet in Livonia, Michigan on Nov. 12.