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A new family of compounds from Teknor Apex is said to raise the processability and physical properties of glass fibre reinforced polyamides to a new level, enabling injection moulders to take on more demanding metal replacement applications or replace alternative thermoplastic materials for greater versatility in processing.
Teknor Apex claims the new Creamid compounds exhibit higher tensile strength and better flow properties compared with standard glass-filled polyamide counterparts, as well as greater dimensional stability, lower water absorption, improved chemical resistance and enhanced surface aesthetics. They differ chemically from standard polyamides and were originally developed in Germany by Plastic-Technologie-Service (PTS), a custom compounder acquired by Teknor Apex in 2016.
Creamid compounds are now commercially available in the Americas and Asia for the first time, bolstered by the application development support and global manufacturing capabilities of Teknor Apex. Featured grades include: CREAMID-A3H7G8.2S*9217/2 (40% glass loading); CREAMID-A3H7G10.2S*9217/2 (50% glass loading); and CREAMID-A3H7G12.2S*9207/2 (60% glass loading). These compounds have been successfully used in Europe for automotive air vents, spoilers, fan blades, spring adapters and key fobs.
The processing advantages of Creamid compounds are said to introduce dramatic improvements for injection moulders in comparison with standard glass-filled polyamides. When compared with a standard 43% glass-filled polyamide, a 40% glass-filled Creamid compound shows a 68% improvement in spiral flow tests, reaches a 41% lower peak injection pressure, and requires 43% less clamp force, Teknor Apex reports. Longer flow length and lower injection pressure translate into a wider processing window, more efficient filling of complex or thin-wall cavities, reduced part warpage and a possible reduction in the number of gates or knit lines. A lower clamp force also opens the possibility of increasing the number of cavities or running parts in a smaller, less costly moulding press.
In metal replacement applications, Creamid compounds are frequently formulated for a flexural modulus as high as 21 GPa, giving moulded parts excellent dimensional stability. Teknor Apex states that these grades also provide tensile strength up to 260 MPa, a property more commonly expected from die-cast aluminium or zinc, and offer significant savings in part weight. When combined with longer tooling life and lower material cost, metal replacement projects with Creamid polyamides typically produce very high returns on investment for OEMs, according to Brian Rickard, Director of Strategy and Business Development for the ETP Division of Teknor Apex.
“Creamid compounds provide designers and processors of metal-replacement and other high-specification components with an ultra-high performance alternative to standard glass-filled nylons,” says Rickard. “Our introduction of these products is the first commercial initiative by Teknor Apex in what will be an extensive expansion of our portfolio of engineering thermoplastic compounds, drawing on the diverse range of unique ETP technologies developed by PTS.”
Image provided by Teknor Apex
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