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engineering thermoplastics | Innovation


solutions.” With the introduction of the new grades at the InnoTrans transport technology exhibition in Berlin in September, the company claims to have the broadest range of EN 45545-compliant thermoplastics. “Railway coach manufacturers are facing challenges


Above: Flow comparison of standard, enhanced (EF) and extreme fl ow (XF) grades of Lanxess Durethan


process to produce PPS. It will focus on customers in Asian markets. Initz says the chlorine and sodium residues found in other PPS resins have the potential to cause corrosion of moulds and functional deterioration of metals parts. Toray Industries, too, is taking a stronger position in PPS (it already claims the number one position in tonnage terms). Toray already has a 19,000 tonne/year plant in Tokai, Japan. Last year it said it would establish a new plant to produce its Torelina polymer at its wholly-owned subsidiary Toray Advanced Materials Korea. In what will be Toray’s fi rst manufacturing base for PPS resin outside of Japan, the plant is expected to be operational in April 2016 with an annual capacity of 8,600 tonnes. Toray will also make the two main raw materials for PPS – sodium hydrogen sulphide (NaSH) and paradi- chlorobenzene (p-DCB) – at the new location, as well as operating a 3,300 tonne/year compounding facility. Most of the PPS resin produced at the new plant will be used in South Korea; the surplus will be supplied to various Toray Group compounding operations, primarily in China. Toray estimates global demand for PPS compounds (put at around 70,000 tonnes in 2012) will grow at more than 8% per annum in the near term and says it has already started considering its next phase of production capacity expansion.


Right: Medical monitoring is a typical target application for Trinseo’s


Emerge 9500CR resin


Plastics on track The transport sector is generating a lot of activity for plastics suppliers at the moment, particularly with the introduction of a new pan-European regulation governing fi re safety in railway rolling stock, EN 45545. SABIC Innovative Plastics, for example, says it is expanding its Lexan polycarbonate product line “to deliver cost-effective and effi cient production with enhanced fi re safety for railway interiors.” SABIC says railway coach manufacturers “can now


meet key safety regulations while also making the production and operation of carriages more cost and energy effi cient thanks to three new polycarbonate


72 COMPOUNDING WORLD | July 2015 www.compoundingworld.com


not only to comply with new regulations and deliver passenger safety and comfort, but also to increase the effi ciency and cost effectiveness of their operations,” says Kim Choate, director of mass transportation. Following the earlier development of Lexan FST3403 resin, which meets the highest hazard level of the regulation for seating requirements (R6–HL3), SABIC has now added Lexan FST3002, which meets the less demanding R6–HL2 seating requirement. This is a high-fl ow copolymer, which SABIC says will allow the design and production of large parts that have consist- ent surfaces with no marks, graining, stains or fl owlines. The company sees it is a good candidate for components such as seat bases, back shells and side panels, where it can provide an alternative to fi bre- reinforced thermosets.


Healthy innovation For medical applications, Trinseo’s van Heur says that the company is working on materials with improved chemical resistance. This is particularly important for products that are used more than once and so have to withstand multiple sterilisation and cleaning cycles, he says. Multiple sterilisation is said to be an increasingly common request in the medical markets of Europe and North America. Emerge 9500CR is a blend of polycarbonate and PET


that withstands harsh cleaning fl uids without signifi cant loss of key properties. Resistance to various cleaners and disinfectants in terms of retention of ultimate tensile elongation is considerably better than PC/ABS blends. Trinseo says the 9500CR grade is aimed in particular at housings that need to be made in ignition resistant materials. The material offers a UL 94 V-0


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