FRAS-LE Applies Hybrid Green Technology to Friction Materials


FARMINGTON HILLS, Mich., November 16, 2009 – FRAS-LE, one of the largest manufacturers of brake pads and linings worldwide, will introduce FRAS-LE’s Hybrid Technology (FHT) in the North-American market in early 2010. The new Hybrid material is environmentally-friendly and meets California’s 2032 legislation today – 22 years early.

California’s new legislation limits the use of some raw materials in brake pad formulations, especially copper. Developed in FRAS-LE’s labs, the Hybrid material does not contain copper, antimony, potassium titanate, mercury, lead, chromium, asbestos, cadmium, or nickel. By 2021 copper may not exceed 5% of brake pads composition and 0.5% by 2032. As stated by Gilberto Crosa, FRAS-LE’s Technology and Industrial Director, “already offering an alternative material proves FRAS-LE’s dedication to environmental protection as well as innovation in brake technology.”

The Hybrid Project emerged from FRAS-LE’s firm environmental preservation policies. FRAS-LE chose to act ahead of its own legislation and to continue on its course of environmental stewardship and social responsibility.

This Hybrid Friction Material is a completely new concept of friction formulation. FRAS-LE’s research and development team was challenged to present a solution that performs as a semi-met with the kindness of a non-asbestos organic (NAO). The result is remarkable: unlike a low-met, this hybrid demonstrates superior noise and vibration harshness (NVH) performance and wear characteristics.

Application – The Hybrid project, which required 12 months to develop, is the result of joint efforts of FRAS-LE’s Alabama manufacturing facility and FRAS-LE’s plant in Caxias do Sul, in Brazil. In the final phase of testing, the material is already commercially available to be used in front and rear brake pads of passenger cars, SUV´s and light pick-up trucks.

Initially, the Hybrid – manufactured only in the American plant – will be offered in three versions (FHT-1: medium/ high friction; FHT-2: medium friction, and FHT-3: medium/ low friction) and only for OEM companies in the United States.

FHT is applicable on programs requiring semi-met, low-met or NAO style linings. It is adaptable with multiple platform requirements, which is another of its strong features. It is also ideal for global applications, where requirements are wide ranging. Common North American and European brake systems can now share the same lining, simplifying industrial stocking and production.

Additional information about FHT can be found at

Profile – FRAS-LE is strategically connected with the main segments of the automotive industry. Leader in the aftermarket, FRAS-LE also supplies its products to the main OEM companies and exports to more than 80 countries. FRAS-LE has plants in Rio Grande do Sul (Brazil), China and in the United States, distribution centers in Argentina and Europe and commercial offices in the United States, Chile, Europe, Mexico, the United Arab Emirates, Africa and China. In the friction material segments, FRAS-LE is one of the leading companies worldwide.

A Randon Company, FRAS-LE produces more than 9,000 items, including brake pads and linings, clutch facings, industrial and specialty products for application in trucks, buses, semi-trailers, automobiles, motorbikes, machines, tractors, railway and subway areas, elevators and oil field drilling rigs. FRAS-LE, a global leader in brake technology and innovation, is safety in motion control.  Additional information about the company can be found at