Saflex(R) Q Series Advanced Acoustic Interlayer Offers Innovative NVH Solution

Saflex(R), a unit of Solutia Inc. producer and sale of polyvinyl butyral (PVB) interlayers for laminated glazing systems, announced the commercial availability of Saflex Q series advanced acoustic interlayer at the Noise and Vibration Conference in Saint Charles, Illinois.

Saflex Q series is an advanced acoustic interlayer for producing laminated glass that provides exceptional acoustic benefits useful to Noise Vibration and Harshness (NVH) engineers. It is a light-weight, cost-effective, drop-in NVH solution that does not require retooling.

"Automotive manufacturers (OEMs) are in constant pursuit of NVH solutions that help reduce the transmission of road and wind noise, as well as structure-borne noise, into the passenger cabin," said Rich Daniels, vice president of innovation and growth for Solutia's Saflex business. "Customers equate quiet with quality, according to a recent J.D. Power report, and the Saflex Q series advanced acoustic interlayer addresses noise transmission through the vehicle's glass - the weak point in the noise path. It reduces noise by up to six decibels in the critical 'human voice recognition' sound range."

Saflex Q series advanced acoustic interlayer is a combination of three Saflex interlayers: one layer of a special, next-generation formulation of acoustic PVB sandwiched between two layers of traditional PVB, which are then laminated between two sheets of glass. Saflex Q series can be used in any vehicle glazing position, including the windscreen, sidelites, backlites and roofs. This translates to a noticeably quieter and more comfortable driving experience for consumers.

"By using Saflex Q series acoustic interlayer in windshields, OEMs can reduce the glass thickness of the windshield, saving up to 4 pounds. In other glass positions, glazing made with Saflex Q series weighs approximately 11 percent less than comparable performance tempered glass. All of which contribute to an NVH solution that provides important overall vehicle weight reduction," added Daniels.

In addition to its acoustic benefits, Saflex Q series also provides long- term edge stability equivalent to the standard Saflex interlayer. This provides OEMs with design flexibility because, with the outstanding edge stability offered with Saflex Q series, acoustic windows can have a sleek appearance because the need for special edge sealing is eliminated.

"The market for acoustic interlayers continues to grow at about 20 percent annually," said Tim Feast, vice president, business management for Saflex. "Once reserved for the luxury vehicle segment, acoustic glazing is now used on vehicles in a full range of price points, which indicates that consumer demand for a quieter vehicle cabin is on the rise."

A number of factors are driving this trend. As people spend more time in their vehicles, they want their passenger cabin to be a comfort zone where they are shielded from the oftentimes harsh external road and wind noise, and where they can enjoy a premium sound system or a conversation that is not compromised by the intrusion of outside noise.

Saflex Q series advanced acoustic interlayer is currently available in several product offerings including Clear and Gradient Automotive with a 32- gauge thickness; and a 30-gauge product offered for side-laminates. The Blue Gradient shadeband interlayer will be available in fall 2007; Grey and Green Gradient colored shadebands will follow later in the year.

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