As part of its commitment to use recyclable materials in manufacturing auto parts, Ford of Europe Research Center in Aachen, Germany, investigating a new plastic-wood composite, innovative, so-called liquid wood. The new material is assessed in a three-year project, which began in May 2009. The project was founded in technologically innovative program, developed in the German region of North Rhine - Westphalia.
Wood processing liquid is derived from rubber production procedure. The compound of wood and plastic to prevent absorption of water and, therefore, increases the durability of the material. The fact that this process can be used untreated wood or wood scraps, make application in one environment beneficial.
Another advantage: the new processing technology improves fixation of wood fibers and insulates unpleasant odors. Therefore, the material can be used inside cars.
Another area where wood could be used a liquid is the engine compartment, the support components such as battery. Previous analysis showed that the liquid is recycled wood extremely efficient because the material can be reprocessed up to five times. Therefore, the balance of emissions of carbon dioxide is almost null. So far, liquid wood was used to terraces high quality of housing and building panels which do not require casting.
Using recyclable resources has a major role in Ford's strategy for the environment. The objective is to continuously increase the proportion of raw materials in developing new models. At present, about 290 components are derivatives of recyclable resources, such as cotton, wood, flax, hemp, jute fiber and natural rubber.
Among the project partners include the University of Paderborn, materials and equipment manufacturers and organizations belonging to the packaging industry. German State North Rhine-Westphalia funds involve about 400,000 euros to develop the process of research, a significant proportion of the total budget involved, over 1 million.