Fleet News

New working group aims to help auto industry meet challenge of lightweight vehicles

Professor Robert Smith

A new working group is being launched to help the automotive industry meet the challenge of lightweight vehicles.

With tighter limits on vehicle CO2 emissions due to be phased in from 2020, Professor Robert Smith, the former president of the British Institute of Non-Destructive Testing (BINDT), aims to bring together experts from all parts of the industry, including designers, manufacturers, materials experts, regulators, insurers and NDT professionals, to put a ‘road map’ in place.

The new rules will limit CO2 emissions to around 100g/km. Professor Smith believes this cap will result in the use of composites, currently limited to high-performance cars and aircraft, being extended into high-volume manufacturing.

At a recent BINDT event at The Manufacturing Technology Centre, Coventry, leading figures from the industry discussed the challenges.

“NDT will play a crucial role in helping the automotive sector overcome the challenges of lightweight vehicles by optimising manufacturing cycle times,” Smith said.

“We have to ramp up the skills level in composites inspection and have just three to five years to put everything in place, otherwise there will be lots of cars that only a few people know how to inspect or repair.”

The challenge of inspecting composite vehicles will be a key theme at Materials Testing 2017 – the world’s most comprehensive exhibition of NDT, condition monitoring and diagnostic technologies.



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