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MATERIALS | PPS COMPOUNDS


Table 1: Typical mechanical properties of Solvay’s new extrusion PPS grades Property


Density, g/cm3 (ISO 1188)


Tensile strength, MPa (ISO 527) Elongation at break, % (ISO 527) Flexural strength, MPa (ISO 178) Flexural modulus, MPa (ISO 178) Notched Izod impact strength, kJ/m2 Viscosity at 400 s-1 Source: Solvay


, 316°C (ISO 1188)


grades that complement injection moulding grades and are intended for use together in demanding automotive cooling line assembly applications. There are currently three Ryton PPS extrusion grades, with stiffnesses varying between 1,500 MPa and 2,500 MPa to fulfil requirements of flexible tubes with different wall thicknesses and diameters or for post-extrusion thermoforming (Table 1). Solvay says flexible coolant lines exhibit high melt strength with enhanced tensile elongation and impact strength, as well as “regular” PPS properties of high chemical resistance and thermal stability. Solvay’s injection moulding grades include


Ryton XE5430BL (30% glass filled) and Ryton R-4-270BL (40% glass filled). “These materials have exhibited a proven fit in many existing connector and bracketry fittings to enable automotive OEMs to design fully harmonised and integrated coolant line assemblies for engines and transmissions,” the company says. “Under-the-hood temperatures are pushing


existing cooling line design and material solutions to their limits, narrowing the safety margin,” says Andreas Lutz, European Area Development Manager for Solvay’s Specialty Polymers global business unit. “Engine downsizing along with the generalisation of high-temperature components such as turbochargers, superchargers, automatic transmissions, air conditioning and exhaust gas recirculation systems all crowded into a shrinking engine bay are leading to a ‘space crunch’ with hot spots that can exceed the thermal performance of conventional metal/rubber and polyamide designs.” Solvay says that since coolant lines are


Right: Cable ties injection moulded in Fortron PPS from Celanese


30 COMPOUNDING WORLD | April 2019


XE3500BL 1.30 55 15


100 (ISO 180/1A)


2500 30


500


XE4500BL 1.25 45 20 80


1800 30


700


XE5500BL 1.20 40 80 60


1500 50


750


among the last components to be designed to fit the engine bay, materials must not only offer the design freedom to enable more complex routing, but also provide enhanced thermal and chemical resistance to ensure operational safety without adding weight, such as the need for additional heat shields. “The more complex a fluid handling line is, the more instrumental Ryton PPS can be in reducing weight as well as simplifying manufacturing and assembly costs,” says Lutz.


Linear innovations After Phillips, Celanese was one of the first to enter the PPS field with its Fortron range of linear polymers. Celanese says that, when compared to branched PPS products, the linear structure yields superior toughness, strength, colourability and processing consistency. One of the principal characteristics of PPS is its


stiffness. Celanese some time ago developed technology to make the polymer more flexible while maintaining its superior heat and chemical resistance. In collaboration with downstream partners, Celanese has commercialised Fortron flexible PPS in under-the-hood fasteners. It says that in these applications Fortron Flexible PPS has demonstrated superior heat and chemical resistance over polyamides, most of which are highly sensitive to moisture sensitivity and have a lower use temperature. The portfolio includes materials with a wide range of flexibility and viscosity to meet application needs and processing requirements for injection moulding, extrusion and blow moulding. Celanese also highlights its Fortron PPS ICE grade, which is said to provide superior dimensional stability and robust resistance to automotive fluids such as coolants. It has been used in a variety of parts for EV coolant pumps that require dimensional precision and stability up to 150°C.


“The additional benefits for Fortron PPS ICE are it significantly reduces


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