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Heat reflective glass helps auto makers improve fuel efficiency

Post Time:Jun 03,2009Classify:Industry NewsView:305

In response to President Barack Obama’s plan to increase and accelerate industry requirements for higher gas mileage and lower greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, Southwall Technologies Inc. called on automakers to install infrared (IR) reflective glass using XIR film technology in all new vehicles. Doing so would be an immediate and cost-effective step toward improving fuel efficiency and reducing emissions.

“Automotive decision makers may be surprised to discover that existing technologies, such as IR reflective glass using XIR film, can help them meet the President's mandate to accelerate fuel efficiency in US cars," said Dennis Capovilla, Southwall Technologies’ President and CEO. “Europe has adopted automotive glass with XIR film technology in over 20 million vehicles since 1993, and it represents low-hanging fruit for US vehicle manufacturers seeking to deliver tomorrow’s high-efficiency vehicles today.”

According to the US Department of Energy’s Vehicle Ancillary Load Reduction Project Close-Out Report, some 230 million vehicles in the US consume 7 billion gallons of fuel annually to power air conditioning (AC). This is equivalent to 5.5 percent of the total domestic light-duty vehicle petroleum consumption.

AC use can have an even more dramatic impact for high-efficiency vehicles, increasing fuel consumption by as much as 35 percent. XIR heat reflective glass significantly reduces the amount of solar heat entering a car, enabling automotive engineers to downsize the AC system while maintaining a comfortable cabin temperature.

“Standardizing on IR reflective glass enables smaller AC systems for all vehicle models," Capovilla added. "This not only justifies the cost premium of the glass but also makes it a value-added feature for consumers who are increasingly seeking options to reduce their impact on the environment.”

Southwall Technologies’ heat reflective XIR film is available off-the-shelf to automotive glass manufacturers who laminate it with uncoated glass to create high-performance and cost-effective IR reflective glass. Because XIR film is laminated with uncoated glass, it enables any automotive glass manufacturer to produce IR reflective glass today without the need to invest tens of millions of dollars in glass coating equipment. XIR film also makes IR reflective glass cost-effective for low-to-mid volume model runs and for aftermarket replacement glass that otherwise could never justify the fixed costs associated with glass coating production.

Source: Search-Autoparts.comAuthor: shangyi

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