Automotive

  • Overview +


    Since 1915, with the introduction of the world’s first laboratory lightfastness testing instrument, the automotive industry has turned to Atlas for leadership in innovative testing solutions to help improve their products and verify supplier conformance.

    Today, Atlas continues as the leading supplier of weathering / lightfastness testing equipment and services to global automotive OEMs and Tier suppliers to meet their own, as well as industry trade, automotive test methods. Atlas Corrosion (salt spray/fog) chambers meet the demands of the most advanced cyclic test methods which now predominate automotive testing.

    Atlas is pioneering new durability testing methods for automotive sensors and displays for Driver Assist and Autonomous Vehicle applications, as well as testing technology for OLED-based instrument panels, Heads-Up-Displays and interior & exterior lighting.



    Outdoor exposure weather testing of automotive materials, components, body bucks and full vehicles, including instrumentation such as temperature and humidity, is a special Atlas competence, particularly at our Miami and Phoenix area test sites. Additionally, Atlas has approximately 25 worldwide exposure test sites to meet the requirements of the global automotive industry.

    With the advent of new automotive substrate materials as alternatives to steel, plus the increasing need to test electric drive components and battery systems for EV and sensors for driver assist and autonomous vehicle applications, corrosion testing is more critical than ever. Atlas is a global leader in providing both basic, walk/drive-in and advanced cycling corrosion test chambers to meet demanding global automotive test methods.
  • Atlas Solutions +


    With global automobile and truck production of 95 million vehicles (2016), it is not surprising that the automotive segment comprises the largest portion of all weathering testing. And, add to that number the related industries of motorcycles, farm and construction off-road vehicles, military, commercial aerospace, and recreational vehicles (watercraft, snowmobiles, etc.) which all face similar testing needs.

    “Act globally, but think (and source) locally” requires testing instruments and services, as well as support, on a global scale; Atlas global footprint is a key attribute to our success as the “go to” automotive weathering technology supplier.

    Automotive Exterior Applications

    Automotive Paint
    Transportation coatings weathering testing is the largest application segment. Monocoat and basecoat/clearcoat (BC/CC) systems of various chemistries dominate with cars and trucks, with gelcoats being common for recreational craft. These include original OEM and aftermarket repair coatings. The changing nature of exterior substrates, such as composites and aluminum as opposed to traditional treated steel, have increased the need for weatherability testing of even previously approved paint systems.

    • Outdoor exposure testing of automotive paint is most often performed in subtropical South Florida  on a Black Box test rack where the paint panels form the top surface of an open-bottom black colored box, which simulates the dead air space and temperature profile of an automobile body.
    • Laboratory weathering of automotive paint systems and coatings is primarily performed to OEM or other (e.g. SAE, VDA, JASO) standard xenon arc test methods with Atlas Ci-Series Weather-Ometers, Xenotest models or SUNTEST XXL+ ST; often a specific model type(s) is designated in the test method or material specification, and defined configurations required. Some legacy testing is performed with now obsolete Sunshine Carbon Arc technology, however commercial lab testing for both xenon and carbon arc is available from Atlas.
    • Corrosion testing for transportation paint systems is primarily performed to OEM or other (e.g. SAE, VDA, JASO) standard corrosion test methods with Atlas chambers. Automotive tests usually involve complex cycles of wet/dry periods, temperature cycles, electrolyte sprays, etc. Atlas BCX corrosion cabinets meet many basic cyclic tests, although more complex methods require the CCX cabinet, properly configured for the specific test method(s), and available in a range of size capacities. Atlas offers corrosion testing services for specific test methods.

        

    Fascia Systems and Body Panels
    • Painted or molded-in-color (MIC) fascia systems are tested for laboratory weathering using smaller specimens taken from the fascia are tested the same as paint systems.
    • Whole fascia and body panels are typically exposed in outdoor environments such as South Florida and Arizona, mounted vertically in their end-use orientation.

    Automotive Exterior Lighting
    • Lenses and reflex reflectors in head and tail lamp assemblies are exposed outdoors in Florida and Arizona per SAE J576 requirements.
    • Exterior lighting assemblies are exposure tested in laboratory xenon arc weathering instruments to OEM requirements. The Ci5000 Series Weather-Ometer is large enough for most lighting fixtures, otherwise outdoor exposure testing is performed to OEM product specifications



    Exterior Trim, Graphics, Weather Seals & Gaskets
    • Laboratory weathering of exterior trim components, badges, mirror housings, roof racks and weather seals is primarily performed to OEM or other (e.g. SAE, VDA, JASO) standard xenon arc test methods with Atlas Ci-Series Weather-Ometers, Xenotest models or SUNTEST XXL+ ST; often a specific model type(s) is designated in the test method or material specification, and defined configurations required. Some Japanese OEM legacy testing is still performed with Sunshine Carbon Arc instruments (developed in the 1930’s and obsoleted by Atlas in the 1990’s), however commercial lab testing for both xenon and carbon arc is available from Atlas
    • The effects of solar thermal load can be tested using Atlas’ metal halide lighting systems, which can be installed in environmental chambers and wind tunnels.

      

    Automotive Glazing
    • Outdoor static exposure of windscreens, sidelites, rear windows, sunroofs and panoramic roof systems is usually performed in Arizona and South Florida. The effects of solar control glass on cabin interiors is often performed on instrumented full vehicle exposures on follow-the-sun carousels.
    • Small test coupon accelerated exposure testing of laminated and tinted glass is also commonly performed on solar concentrators such as EMMA/EMMAQUA at Atlas/ DSET Laboratories site in Arizona.

    Under-hood, Drive-train, Wheel Components
    • While normally exposed primarily to indirect reflected solar radiation, polymeric under-hood components such as hoses, wiring, belts and polymer housings, and are often tested to xenon arc weathering standards to OEM specifications.
    • Metallic under-hood, drive-train, wheel and brake components are typically corrosion tested to OEM corrosion test methods. Electrical components such as engine starters and solenoids are typically corrosion tested while operating under electrical power
    • Electric Vehicle (EV) and hybrid (HEV) components such as batteries, connector blocks and terminals, drive motors, etc., are corrosion tested as components to OEM test methods. Alternatively, Atlas walk/drive-in custom corrosion chambers for body buck or whole-vehicle exposures are used.*

    * Automotive corrosion tests typically involve complex cycles of wet/dry periods, temperature cycles, electrolyte sprays, etc. Atlas BCX corrosion cabinets meet many basic cyclic and all steady-state tests. More complex test cycles require the CCX cabinet, properly configured for the specific test method(s), and available in a range of size capacities. Atlas offers corrosion testing services for specific test methods.




    Automotive Interior Applications

    Instrument and Door Panels, Airbag Covers, Hard Trim
    • Instrument panel (IP), door panels and airbag cover materials are tested for lightfastness properties (such as fade, color change, gloss, tackiness, etc.) and degradation caused by solar radiation filtered by automotive glazing, in combination with typically high cabin temperatures and humidity levels. These are primarily tested using xenon arc laboratory weathering instruments to OEM specifications.
    • If, required, outdoor testing is typically performed in a controlled azimuth tracking IP/DP Box which simulates the conditions found in the interior of an automobile. Alternatively, “indirect” weathering static exposures expose specimens to natural sunlight through glass.

      

    Carpets, Upholstery, Headliners
    • Textiles are primarily tested for lightfastness using xenon arc laboratory equipment OEM specifications.
    • Textiles may also be tested in an IP/DP Box or “indirect” weathering static exposures which expose specimens to natural sunlight through glass, per OEM requirements.

    Interior Electronics
    Interior electronics include instrument cluster displays, radio and entertainment systems, navigation, driver information and driver assist displays, cellular and wi-fi, etc.
    • Most automotive cabin electronics are tested using laboratory xenon arc lightfastness equipment to OEM requirements. Electronics for motorcycles, etc., must typically meet OEM requirements for weatherability testing.
    • New sensor and display technologies in development, such as Driver Assist, Autonomous Vehicle, Heads-Up Display and OLED Instrument Panels, may require additional custom durability testing.



    Safety Restraints
    Occupant passive safety restraint systems such as seat belts must meet governmental, industry and/or OEM requirements for light/UV exposure and corrosion testing as well as flammability resistance.
    • In the USA, FMVSS 209 - Seat Belt Assemblies - Passenger Cars, Multipurpose Passenger Vehicles, Trucks, and Buses require testing to UV exposure to ASTM G23 Type E—Single open-flame sunshine carbon-arc lamp apparatus. Atlas provides commercial exposure testing to this requirement. In other countries, testing with xenon arc equipment or fluorescent sunlamp (UVTest) devices may be required.
    • FMVSS 209 requires corrosion testing to ASTM B117 - Standard Practice for Operating Salt Spray (Fog) Apparatus, which can be met with any Atlas SF, BCX or CCX series corrosion cabinet. Also available from Atlas as a commercial testing service.

    Flammability Testing
    • The Atlas HMV Horizontal Motor Vehicle flammability test chamber meets FMVSS 302 – “Flammability of Interior Materials – Passenger Cars, Multipurpose Passenger Vehicles, tracks, and Buses (Effective 9-1-72). This standard specifies burn-resistance requirements for materials used in the occupant compartments of motor vehicles, and other standards based on FVMSS 302.

    Large Scale Solar Simulation
    Atlas Custom Systems is a leader in custom large scale full spectrum solar simulation and solar-thermal load lighting systems which can be integrated into walk/drive-in environmental chambers, wind tunnels, etc. Atlas custom designs lighting solutions for weathering or solar heat load testing, including the mounting and control systems to customer requirements using proprietary Atlas modeling software.

      

    Crash Test Lighting

    Since 1976 Atlas Custom Systems automotive crash test lighting systems for high speed photography have been recognized around the world for their quality and performance.

  • Testing Standards +


    • ASTM D7869 Standard Practice for Xenon Arc Exposure Test with Enhanced Light and Water Exposure for Transportation Coatings
    • BMW GS 95024-3-1 Electrical and electronic components in motor vehicles - Environmental requirements and testing
    • BMW AA-P 260 Accelerated weathering crack resistance (Kurzbewitterung im Xenotestgerät – Rissbeständigkeit)
    • BMW AA-P 288 Accelerated weathering colour stability (Kurzbewitterung im Xenontestgerät Farbbeständigkeit)
    • BMW PR 306.5 Solar simulation for trim parts
    • Chrysler LP461H-77 (Condensing Humidity)
    • Chrysler LP463PH-9-01 (Condensing Humidity)
    • DIN 75220 Ageing automobile components in solar simulations units
    • DIN 67530 Reflektometer als Hilfsmittel zur Glanzbeurteilung an ebenen Anstrich- und Kunststoff-Oberflächen (zurückgezogene Norm)
    • DIN 75220 Alterung von Kfz-Bauteilen in Sonnensimulationsanlagen
    • Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard FVMSS 302 Flammability of Interior Materials
    • Ford FLTM BO 116-01 Resistance to interior weathering
    • Ford CETP 00.00L-467 Accelerated Cyclic Corrosion Test
    • GB/T 10485 Road vehicles- Lighting and light-signaling devices- Environmental endurance
    • GB/T 32088 Accelerated weathering test methods of automotive nonmetallic components and materials using a xenon-arc apparatus
    • GB/T 5137 Automotive safety glass test method
    • GM 14872 Cyclic Corrosion Laboratory Test
    • GM 9125P Procedures for Laboratory Accelerated Exposure of Automotive Materials
    • GME 60292 Designation of Colour Fastness and Resistance to Artificial Light
    • GMW 14162 Colorfastness to Artificial Weathering
    • GMW 14170 Coating Requirements for Elastomeric Seals
    • GMW 14650 Performance Requirements for Exterior Plastic Parts
    • GMW 3414 Test Method for Artificial Weathering of Automotive Interior Trim Materials
    • Honda CCT Cyclic Corrosion Test
    • Hyundai MS 210-05 Molded Plastic Parts - Interior Use
    • Hyundai MS 300-32 Standard Test Method - Woven, Knit
    • ISO 105-B02 Textiles - Tests for colour fastness - Part B02: Colour fastness to artificial light: Xenon arc fading lamp test (is used e.g. safety belts)
    • ISO 105-B06 Textiles - Tests for colour fastness - Part B06: Colour fastness and ageing to artificial light at high temperatures: Xenon arc fading lamp test (Very important and frequently used test)
    • ISO 105-B10 Textiles - Tests for colour fastness - Part B10: Artificial weathering - Exposure to filtered xenon-arc radiation (not used for automotive)
    • ISO 3917 Road vehicles - Safety glazing materials - Test methods for resistance to radiation, high temperature, humidity, fire and simulated weathering
    • ISO 4892-1 Plastics - Methods of exposure to laboratory light sources - Part 1: General guidance
    • ISO 4892-2 Plastics - Methods of exposure to laboratory light sources - Part 2: Xenon-arc sources
    • ISO 16464-1 Paints and varnishes - Methods of exposure to laboratory light sources - Part 1: General guidance
    • ISO 16464-2 Paints and varnishes - Methods of exposure to laboratory light sources - Part 2: Xenon-arc lamps
    • JASO M346 Light-exposure test method by xenon-arc lamp for automotive interior part
    • JASO M351 Automotive parts - Accelerated weathering testing method by xenon-arc lamp for exterior parts
    • JIS B 7754 Light-exposure and light-and-water-exposure apparatus (xenon arc lamp type)
    • JIS D 0205 Test Method of Weatherability for Automotive Parts
    • MIL-STD 810F Environmental engineering considerations and laboratory tests - Part 2: Laboratory test methods - 505.4: Solar radiation (Sunshine)
    • MIL-STD 810G Environmental engineering considerations and laboratory tests - Part 2: Laboratory test methods - 505.5: Solar radiation (Sunshine)
    • Nissan M0158 Cyclic Corrosion Tests
    • Peugeot Citroen (PSA) D27 1389 Paint Coatings Rubbers and Plastics - Artificial Ageing by Weather-Ometer
    • Peugeot Citroen (PSA) D47 1431 Materials and Parts in the Passenger Compartment Appearance Behaviour to Artificial Light at High and Mean Temperatures
    • Renault D27 1911 Rubber and Plastic Paint Coatings - Artificial Ageing by Weather-Ometer
    • Renault D47 1431 Materials and Passenger Compartment Parts Behaviour of the Appearance to Artificial Light at High and Medium Temperatures
    • SAE J1885 Accelerated Exposure of Automotive Interior Trim Components Using a Controlled Irradiance Water Cooled Xenon-Arc Apparatus (withdrawn?)
    • SAE J1960 Accelerated Exposure of Automotive Exterior Materials Using a Controlled Irradiance Water-Cooled Xenon Arc Apparatus (withdrawn)
    • SAE J2334 Laboratory Cyclic Corrosion Test
    • SAE J2412 Accelerated Exposure of Automotive Interior Trim Components Using a Controlled Irradiance Xenon-Arc Apparatus
    • SAE J2413 Protocol to Verify Performance of New Xenon Arc Test Apparatus
    • SAE J2527 Performance Based Standard for Accelerated Exposure of Automotive Exterior Materials Using a Controlled Irradiance Xenon-Arc Apparatus
    • Toyota TSH 1555G Cyclic Corrosion Test
    • VDA 621-429 Tests for automotive coatings - Weathering test for colour fastness
    • VDA 621-430 Tests for automotive coatings - Test for resistance to cracking of 2 layer metallic clear coats
    • VDA 75202 Automotive interior materials - Colourfastness and ageing test against light at high temperatures: Xenon arc
    • Volvo STD1027 Accelerated atmospheric corrosion testing – Indoor Corrosion Test
    • Volvo STD 423 Light exposure - Accelerated weather ageing of exterior materials
    • Volvo STD 1026 ORGANIC MATERIAL - Colour fastness to artificial light at 100 °C
    • VW PV 1303 Non-metallic materials - Lightfastness test for interior parts
    • VW PV 1306 Exposure Test for Determining the Tackiness of Polypropylene Parts
    • VW PV 3929 Non-Metallic Materials - Weather Ageing in Dry, Hot Climate
    • VW PV 3930 Non-Metallic Materials - Weathering in Moist, Hot Climate
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