Issue: Sep 2013


Insulating shell with - popcorn effect



Insulation technology from aviation industry enters the automotive market

by Nick Palmen

The mere optimization of the combustion process is no longer sufficient to meet today’s stringent emissions regulations. Hence, for quite some time now the insulation specialists from ISOLITE have been relying on powerful insulation measures in the exhaust system designed to reduce NOx and CO2 emissions. By reaching the operating temperature more quickly, downstream aggregates such as catalytic converters effectively help to reduce fuel consumption and harmful emissions. At this year’s IAA (International Motor Show), the company showcases its latest development – ISOLITE XP. Being an expanding insulating shell on the basis of a silicate fibre, the product achieves a higher degree of efficiency than common insulation solutions, with both installation space and weight unchanged. The insulating shell features the so called “popcorn effect”, i.e. a volume increase of 30 percent in the initial heating phase, for example during the very first drive.

“ISOLITE XP behaves like a corn kernel upon heating,” explains Matthias Kroll, Managing Director of the ISOLITE Group. “Because of the increase in volume, a higher amount of air can enter the insulation body, resulting in a thermal insulation performance which is approximately ten percent higher. Simultaneously, this effect enhances the sound absorption by 25 percent compared to conventional acoustic insulation measures.”

As a result of this “popping effect”, the insulating material fits perfectly into the surface structure of the component part in question while filling up the insulation space almost entirely. In this way, the insulating shell accurately encloses the circular welds on the exhaust pipes too. This prevents damaging mechanical influences on the insulating body and minimizes interfering vibrations. ISOLITE individually adapts the insulating shells to the respective application, thus ensuring ideal thermal and acoustic performance at all times.
Originally developed for the aviation industry, ISOLITE XP has long been utilized reliably in low-pressure turbines. The first automotive series application of this new insulation technology will be implemented by a major German automaker. Details of the application will also be shown at the IAA in Frankfurt, Hall 8.0 Booth F10.

ISOLITE Group

As a leading specialist for high-temperature insulation systems in the automotive and aviation fields, ISOLITE contributes to reducing wear on downstream aggregates and increasing their efficiency, thus helping to preserve our planet’s resources.

The ISOLITE Group produces high-temperature insulation systems with 240 employees at four locations in Ludwigshafen (with two locations), Worms and Greenville SC (USA). In 2012, the company generated approx. 34 million euros and delivered a total of approximately one million insulation systems to various OEMs.

For further information on ISOLITE please visit: www.isolite.de.

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