KVT-Fastening, as part of the Bossard Group, has been a leading specialist for industrial fastening and assembly technology since 1972 and offers sophisticated, high-quality individual components and customer-specific solutions for applications in a variety of sectors. Innovative MultiMaterial-Welding (short MM-Welding) is particularly important for lightweight construction.
The most fundamental challenge faced by e-vehicle producers is that with porous materials, which play a central role in lightweighting, the lack of solid material makes it difficult or impossible to use conventional fastening methods. This is where MM-Welding comes in. MM-Welding technology employs an ultrasonic process to partially liquify a thermoplastic fastening element (LiteWWeight® Pin) to create a positive-locking connection in a fraction of a second. In another type of MM-Welding fastening method (InWWerse®), an ultrasonic process is used to partially melt two polymer components connected by a metallic fastener.
Apart from overall weight reduction, MM-Welding fastening methods provide numerous design options, without any performance restrictions (pull-out strength) or increased cost. For high-end automotive interior designs, the fastener’s aesthetics are as important as its technical features. The LiteWWeight® Pin ensures invisible fastener heads from above, for a clean and attractive appearance. And it especially excels in applications with standard honeycomb materials and honeycomb materials with pre-moulded holes.
MM-Welding also offers LiteWWeight® Lotus fasteners for woven or non-woven fibre or textile components. It is an excellent substitute for conventional technologies such as rivets, staples, or adhesives, thanks to the strong integrated connection in the substrate. To overcome the dimensional constraints, LiteWWeight® zEPP, used for joints in EPP or similar foams, is a strong solution also available with a small footprint and therefore particular suitable in limited space. Its special anti-twist elements offer high torque resistance, and the pull-out strength is high across a wide range of foam densities, without the need for predrilling.
One way to streamline production processes is by reducing the number of steps. Switching from adhesive bonding to an ultrasonically joined metallic InWWerse® fastener, with fewer preparatory steps of the workpiece surface and less follow-up time (adhesive curing time), can significantly reduce the number of process steps. Long cycle times could impact on economies of scale. When used with fibrous materials, LiteWWeight® Lotus fasteners can help to speed up processing times, since access is only required on one side during production.
Reducing the number of items in inventory is another viable approach to streamlining operations. While the conventional clip solution consists of two separate components, the LiteWWeight® Lotus Abalone fastening element is welded into the floor mat’s fibrous substrate as a single element. Fewer parts in inventory can add up to significant cost savings in large production runs. Furthermore, the pre-treatment process, such as drilling/punching holes, is not necessary. MM-Welding has been broadening its portfolio of standard fastening solutions for the mobility industry and is pushing forward with developments for boosting customer productivity. Vehicles containing MM-Welding fastenings are already on the road.
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