The automotive industry continues to be a hotbed of patent innovation. Activity in lightweight acoustic fabric is driven by the growing demand for noise reduction, environmental sustainability, improved functionality, advancements in material science, and growing importance of technologies such as 3D printing for intricate designs, microfibers for sound barrier and heat insulation, and aerogels for sound absorption. In the last three years alone, there have been over 1.7 million patents filed and granted in the automotive industry, according to GlobalData’s report on Advanced materials in automotive: lightweight acoustic fabric. Buy the report here.
According to GlobalData’s Technology Foresights, which uses over one million patents to analyze innovation intensity for the automotive industry, there are 300+ innovation areas that will shape the future of the industry.
Lightweight acoustic fabric is a key innovation area in advanced materials
Lightweight acoustic fabric refers to a type of material that is designed to absorb, reflect, or dampen sound waves while being lightweight in nature. Such fabrics may include polymers, composites, metal materials, or natural materials.
GlobalData’s analysis also uncovers the companies at the forefront of each innovation area and assesses the potential reach and impact of their patenting activity across different applications and geographies. According to GlobalData, there are 30+ companies, spanning technology vendors, established automotive companies, and up-and-coming start-ups engaged in the development and application of lightweight acoustic fabric.
Key players in lightweight acoustic fabric – a disruptive innovation in the automotive industry
‘Application diversity’ measures the number of applications identified for each patent. It broadly splits companies into either ‘niche’ or ‘diversified’ innovators.
‘Geographic reach’ refers to the number of countries each patent is registered in. It reflects the breadth of geographic application intended, ranging from ‘global’ to ‘local’.
Patent volumes related to lightweight acoustic fabric
Source: GlobalData Patent Analytics
Toray Industries is one of the top patent filers in lightweight acoustic fabric. It filed several patents for improved acoustic absorption properties. Some other key patent filers in this space include Hexcel and General Electric.
In terms of application diversity, Mitsubishi leads the pack, while Vestas and Mitsui Chemicals stood in the second and third positions,respectively. By means of geographic reach, Modern Meadow held the top position, followed by Nippon Steel and Toshiba.
To further understand the key themes and technologies disrupting the automotive industry, access GlobalData’s latest thematic research report on Automotive.