Panasonic to commercialize molding compounds for laser welding

Panasonic will begin mass production of PBT molding compounds for laser welding in March 2016.

Panasonic (Osaka, Japan) will begin mass production of polybutylene terephthalate (PBT) molding compounds for laser welding in March 2016, a move that will contribute to the enhancement of long-term reliability and design flexibility for automotive switches and sensors.

Current processing methods for producing automotive sensors include sealing with packings and bolts, bonding with adhesive agents, and ultrasonic welding. But laser welding has recently attracted the industry's attention, as its high welding strength can shorten bonding time and increase productivity. However, plastic molding compounds generally used for laser welding have had low laser transmittance, leading to problems with welding strength and waterproof properties.

To solve these problems, Panasonic commercialized PBT molding compounds with high laser transmittance, offering high welding strength and waterproof properties. With these compounds, it is possible to use laser welding instead of current processing methods—therefore, long-term reliability and design flexibility can be enhanced when applied to automotive components.

Features of the molding compounds include 72% laser transmittance (compared to 52% with conventional methods); no air leaks found under air pressure (3 atm) in water after a high-temperature, high-humidity storage test or a temperature cycling test; warpage of 0.5mm or less (2.3mm for conventional products); and a 94% strength retention rate after a high-temperature, high-humidity storage test (50% for conventional products).

For more information, please visit www.panasonic.com/global.

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