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engineering thermoplastics | Innovation


Right: BASF’s first carbon


fibre reinforced Durethan PBT is targeted at auto electronics


automotive interiors and exteriors.” At last year’s Fakuma show, another Bayblend grade – T65HG (High Gloss) – was used for a demonstration part moulded on the Engel stand using Mucell foaming technology. The part had excellent gloss straight out of the mould, thanks not only to the material but also to the use of Engel’s Variomelt mould temperature control using induction heating from Roctool. Mucell cuts part weight by around 7%, and also has a massive effect on the injection pressure required.


Below: This unpainted door sill trim for the BMW i3 is made in Trinseo’s GX50 PC/ABS


Structural development Durethan BKV60XF is a new grade of polyamide for structural parts from Lanxess which, despite being heavily filled, has very good flow (XF signifies eXtreme Flow). In spiral flow tests, its flow path is 30% longer than that of the company’s Durethan BKV60EF (Easy Flow) grade. Lanxess says in customer trials on a real part, it was possible to use half the filling pressure required for an alternative (unidentified) grade with a similar reinforcement level. The new grade makes it possible to more easily fill parts with complicated geometries and with very thin walls. “I don’t know how thin we can go, or how much it makes sense,” says Tim Arping, head of marketing for high performance materials in the EMEA region. There are many reasons why parts need a certain wall thickness, he points out, but high flow grades can simplify moulding by, for example, eliminating the need for sequential injection through multiple injection points. They can also enable moulds to be used on smaller machines than would otherwise be the case. The BKV60XF grade is suitable for over-moulding inserts in Lanxess’s Tepex formable sheets of continu- ous fibre reinforced polyamides, although Lanxess has also developed a grade specifically for this application, Durethan BKV55 TPX. This is said to be especially good for thin wall sections. As Arping points out, in over-


moulded Tepex applications the overmoulding material serves principally to fill ribs and to add functionality, so a material is needed that can fill what is effectively a very small cavity with long and narrow flow paths. Another polyamides major, Solvay Engineering


Plastics, has been collaborating with automotive systems expert Mahle in the development of oil filter modules using Technyl polyamide resins. “The use of high-performance plastics such as Technyl has opened a wide design window for part consolidation and functional integration,” says Ralf Kiemlen, head of development oil filtration systems at Mahle. Technyl compounds are used on more than 15 different Mahle oil modules in vehicles on the road today. All underwent rigorous testing, including long-term ageing resistance in glycol flow.


Activity in PPS Solvay Specialty Polymers recently extended its range of high performance polymers with the acquisition of the Ryton PPS (polyphenylene sulphide) business from Chevron Phillips. Ryton PPS has a strong presence in the automotive sector, especially in metal replacement, which is a key area of activity for Solvay Specialty Polymers. It also has a strong position in electronics, where it enhances fire resistance of components. “Ryton PPS fits neatly with our unique specialty polymers portfolio and reinforces our unrivalled capabilities to provide solutions to our customers in dynamic innovative end-markets,” says Augusto Di Donfrancesco, president of Solvay Specialty Polymers. Another PPS deal was recently signed between South Korean polymer maker Initz and compounder A. Schulman, which will produce Initz’s Ecotran compounds and market them in Europe, the Middle East, Africa and the Americas. Initz is a joint venture between SK Chemicals and Teijin and uses what it says is the world’s first chlorine-free and solvent-free


70 COMPOUNDING WORLD | July 2015 www.compoundingworld.com


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