Radical Materials Introduces Range of Odour and VOC Absorbing Masterbatches

Radical Materials, a specialist technical compound and masterbatch producer, has launched AirSential, a range of Odour and VOC-absorbing masterbatches. 

Designed specifically for automotive interior applications where recycled polymers are increasing, the masterbatch can be used by polymer compounders or added to moulded parts at the point of manufacture. The technology binds strongly to odour and VOC molecules such as Formaldehyde, Toluene and Acetaldehyde, preventing them from off-gassing into the interior space of the vehicle; importantly, the absorption and binding of VOC molecules are maintained even at elevated temperatures, which is essential when you consider the temperature that the interior of the vehicle can reach on a summer’s day.

Masterbatches are usually made using the customer’s recycled polymer as the carrier and are incorporated at low addition rates; extensive testing has proven that physical properties and processing parameters are unaffected. Working on reducing the VOCs responsible for fogging, which is often evident on the inside of the glass of new cars, has, using the VDA 278 method, proven the masterbatches effective when used in PP and POM.  Odour testing using the VDA 270-C3 method in talc-filled recycled PP has shown reductions of around 1.5 points, bringing the number down from about 4 to 2.5.

In July 2023, the European Commission proposed a new Regulation on End-of-Life Vehicles. This new regulation stipulates that a minimum of 25% by weight of the plastics used in a new vehicle’s construction consists of recycled content, and 25% of this material needs to come from end-of-life vehicles. The resulting demand for automotive polymers containing recycled content will necessitate waste plastics with even greater levels of odour and VOCs having to be used. According to a Chinese survey, 77% of Chinese people would be more likely to purchase a car that didn’t have the “new car smell” as this is associated with feeling nauseous and stressed.

ECHA has recently adopted measures to reduce formaldehyde levels within vehicle interiors, bringing permissible levels down to 0.062 mg/m3, nearly half of what they were previously, this makes the adoption materials with recycled content all the more problematic, but it’s here that Radical materials feel their technology can help.

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