Jeff McGarry, Engineering Group Manager, ME Body in White Dispense Technologies with General Motors discusses the future of adhesives and bonding leading up to the Global Automotive Lightweighting Materials Detroit Summit 2018, coming Aug. 21-23.
Jeff, first can you give us an introduction to your background and current activities at General Motors?
I am currently the Engineering Group Manager for Body ME Dispense Technologies. My team is responsible for the equipment and the processing of adhesives and sealers within the body shop. Recently we have focused our efforts on application optimization to apply the right amount of adhesive and avoid the quality issues from over application (weld and paint quality issues).
What main developments do you see in structural adhesives and bonding in the next 5 years?
I see developments in adhesive materials that allow greater control during application and processing. Improved wash resistance to avoid paint quality issues. Materials that are more stable over longer periods of time.
What are the main technical challenges to increased use of adhesives and how are these being overcome?
I see one of the biggest challenges with the increased use of adhesives is in process verification. Verification of adhesive wet-out within the joint can only be completed by destructive evaluation. Destructive evaluation is costly and time consuming. Ultrasonic evaluation appears to be the future but the technology is not robust enough for widespread use in the body shop.
What do you see as the biggest challenge for the automotive industry?
I see the biggest challenge as the balance between lightweighting, vehicle performance and corrosion performance.
What materials and technologies do you see having the most potential in delivering cost efficient automotive lightweighting?
Continued advancement in next generation steels, Gen 3+.
What car/motor vehicle do you drive?
2008 Corvette Z06
What are you looking forward to at this year’s GALM Detroit Conference?
Presentation on advanced high strength steels and advanced joining methods of dissimilar materials.