Southern Manufacturing

High Performance Polymer Resin Technology

13 December 2001

USTech Materials Corporation is currently in the process of manufacturing and marketing its flagship product, PolyEther Amide Resin (PEAR), under a worldwide licensing agreement with Ashland, Inc.

The Institute for Environmental and Industrial Science (IEIS) at Southwest Texas State University provides manufacturing, R&D and customer support.

Dr. Joseph H. Koo, USTM's Technical Director, said, ""PEAR resin technology has the potential to be configured to many current and future manufacturing applications. We envision, for example, PEAR's existing technology incorporated with polymer nanocomposites that will enhance its flammability, mechanical, thermal, and gas barrier properties, as well as dimensional, thermal, and chemical stabilities. We believe this single adaptation will make it compatible to many diverse applications. This is a very flexible high performance polymer resin system that can be adapted to many end uses.""

PEAR high performance polymer resins were developed by Ashland, Inc. who spent 14 years and $10 million developing this advanced polymer resin system, originally developed for strategic defense applications. It is protected by numerous patents worldwide. PEAR is a unique family of thermoset resins that combine strength, reduced weight, chemical, and temperature resistance. These polymers offer excellent thermal stability, and give off little toxic fumes and smoke when subjected to flames. PEAR offers excellent electrical insulation properties, cyclic qualities (long fatigue life), high fiber and fill load capability, low viscosity and excellent adhesive characteristics compared with other materials. During the curing process, it exhibits zero volatiles and low exothermic reaction properties coveted by high performance composite fabricators.

PEAR has been considered to be a viable alternative to existing aerospace application resins by McDonnell Douglas/Boeing through a formal research study, and could be considered for alternatives to present interior and exterior aircraft structures. Past studies have shown PEAR to exceed FAA standards for fire resistant insulation materials by a factor of about 2:1. This makes PEAR a viable candidate for insulating material for cockpit and passenger areas, and for consideration to be included in many applications the next generation of commercial, private and military aircraft.

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