Teijin Ltd.'s V-Lap lightweight, sound-absorbing polyester material has been selected for use in the floor carpet of the new Mitsubishi Outlander, a midsize crossover vehicle that launched in Japan last month.
The floor carpet was developed by Hayashi Telempu Corporation, a manufacturer of interior automotive parts. V-Lap was adopted as the sound-absorbing material for the carpet’s back side.
V-Lap’s vertically oriented nonwoven structure performs every bit as well as conventional sound-absorbing materials yet weighs only half as much. With environmental regulations becoming stricter worldwide, there is a growing demand for solutions that help to improve fuel efficiency, including through vehicle-weight reduction, according to the company.
V-Lap is a nonwoven fabric comprising fibers that are oriented vertically (upward) and made with a unique manufacturing method to produce a structure that is bulky, lightweight and easy to mold. First used as a cushioning material for bedding, its superior sound-absorbing property led to its use in vehicles. Going forward, Teijin aims to expand the global market for V-Lap’s use in various sound-absorption auto parts, including ceilings and doors and is also developing it as a heat-insulating material for use in next-generation houses. Nonwoven products with added functionality can be produced through composite fabrication by bonding V-Lap to other films.