Fabrication and Testing of Composite Leaf Spring

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In order to conserve natural resources and economize energy, weight reduction has been the main focus of automobile manufacturers in the present scenario. Weight reduction can be achieved primarily by the introduction of better material, design optimization and better manufacturing processes. The suspension leaf spring is one of the potential items for weight reduction in automobiles as it accounts for 10% - 20% of the unsprung weight.

This achieves the vehicle with more fuel efficiency and improved riding qualities. The introduction of composite materials was made it possible to reduce the weight of leaf spring without any reduction on load carrying capacity and stiffness. Since, the composite materials have more elastic strain energy storage capacity and high strength to weight ratio as compared with those of steel, multi-leaf steel springs are being replaced by mono-leaf composite springs. The composite material offer opportunities for substantial weight saving but not always be cost-effective over their steel counterparts.

Investigation of composite leaf spring in the early 60’s failed to yield the production facility because of inconsistent fatigue performance and absence of strong need for mass reduction. Researches in the area of automobile components have been receiving considerable attention now.

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