Adient’s UltraThin chair took second place in the Future of Lightweighting category at the Altair Enlighten Awards in 2022
Adient’s UltraThin chair took second place in the Future of Lightweighting category at the 2022 Altair Enlighten Awards.
The Altair Enlighten Awards honor the greatest advancements in sustainability and light weight that demonstrate successful commitment to reducing carbon footprints, reducing water and energy consumption, as well as efforts to reuse and recycle materials.
UltraThin is a new, unique seat construction of thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) panels that provides a high level of comfort and support, achieving significant space savings, component consolidation and overall mass reduction. This technology does not exist anywhere else in the automotive industry.
“UltraThin is the result of thousands of hours of research and development and includes many innovations,” said Tom Gould, Chief Engineer. “UltraThin is a major paradigm shift from traditional foam and seat construction to cushion and back comfort panels made from recyclable thermoplastic elastomers. It may redefine flesh-to-metal criteria in seat design, with thinner seat sections while improving comfort and safety through technical deflection and concave contours.
UltraThin seats can be used in all rows of seats and in all vehicle segments. Automakers are working with Adient to co-develop this technology for their existing seat structures. The range of customizations includes front and rear rows for multiple segments and a wide range of content levels, allowing it to be used from basic models to fully satisfied luxury seats.
The supportive UltraThin panel adapts to the posture, size and weight of the occupants and comfortably accommodates occupants of different sizes. The thinner backrest saves approximately 40mm of knee room for the second row occupants. The thin supporting cushion can reduce the block height to 45mm, freeing up space under the floor for battery packs. The technology saves 44mm of space per row, reducing the overall weight of the vehicle. Other features include:
- 30% overall reduction in the volume of the seat cover circumference
- 14% overall mass reduction (compared to standard foam, trim and comfort systems)
- Premium comfort in its class in a thin package
- 10% reduction in total seat components (compared to standard foam, upholstery and comfort systems)