Automakers Search New Resin image

Global automakers have begun to stretch supplies of nylon-12, looking for longer-term solutions to a supply crunch that threatens vehicle production.

The explosion which took place on March 31st at a German manufacturing plant might cause a plastic resin shortage that could disrupt U.S. auto production. The component is called CDT, found in a nylon resin called PA-12 or Nylon-12, which is used to make a specialized plastic for auto fuel lines and brake lines, solar cells, pipelines, sporting goods and household items.

“The shortage is real and immediate,” TI Automotive Ltd. Chairman and CEO William Kozyra wrote in a memo to customers last week. “The possibility of production interruptions at some of your facilities in the next few weeks is high.”

The explosion took place last week and GM declared that it was caused by gases that vented from an experimental battery pack inside an enclosed room in its battery lab in the Alternative Energy Center building. Auto and parts makers are collaborating to quickly find a solution for the short supplies of the resin.