Innovative 'capless' fuel filler system protects vehicles from scratches, reduces emissions

A new "capless" fuel filler system for the 2008 Ford Flex, Escape, F150, Expedition and Lincoln MKS vehicles is honoured as a finalist in the Society of Plastics Engineers Most Innovative Use of Plastics Award in the chassis/powertrain category. Originally introduced in North America on the Ford GT, the Ford innovation is upgraded in this rendition, manufactured by Martinrea using DuPont™ Zytel® HTN PPA, to integrate a Mis-Fuel Inhibitor (MFI) that ensures only the proper fuel type can be dispensed into the vehicle. The capless fuel filler system eliminates the need for the operator to remove and replace the fuel cap, while also protecting vehicles from paint scratches that result from a dangling fuel cap. The new system is compatible with aggressive fuels, such as biodiesel and ethanol, and supports the compliance of Ford's vehicles to all California Low Emission Vehicle (LEV II or PZEV) requirements. Importantly, this system could further reduce emissions relative to capped systems because the fuel neck isn't opened until the fuel pump nozzle is inserted. When capless fueling is completed, the nozzle is removed and the system seals shut automatically, helping to minimize evaporative emissions. The system also integrates the vacuum relief function with the fuel sealing door to reduce cost and complexity. Plus it features optimized geometry for the fuel outlet to direct fuel flow for consistent, trouble-free refueling. Zytel® HTN PPA was selected because of its favorable impact and permeation resistance as well as its compatibility with ultrasonic welding, a first in this application. Operator instructions and serial numbers are laser etched into the material.
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