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New Ultem Composites, Foam and Fibre

  • Thursday, 16th July 2009
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SABIC Innovative Plastics launched new leading-edge Ultem composite, fibre and foam technologies at NPE 2009.

These new materials build on the company’s Ultem polyetherimide (PEI) resin, a thermoplastic that is used for demanding and high-heat resistant applications. Target markets and applications for the new Ultem technologies include flame retardant fabrics, ultra-lightweight aircraft interiors, state-of-the art radomes and communications equipment, and other high-end products where outstanding levels of performance are required.

“These new Ultem forms are unique, ultra-tough, super-performance materials designed to meet the important and ever-changing needs of our customers,” said Kim Choate, global product director for Ultem Resins, SABIC Innovative Plastics. “They offer virtually unmatched performance and value, and illustrate how we are reengineering our premier technologies to give our customers new game-changing solutions that enable a wide range of new business opportunities. It’s an incredibly exciting time in the history of polymer science – for us and our customers.”

By attaching fabric made with Ultem fiber and other materials to an Ultem foam or honeycomb core, unique composites can be created for the design flexibility, low-cost manufacturing, and long-term performance needed to address specific application requirements. For example, TenCate Advanced Composites – a leading manufacturer of advanced fibre reinforced composites for semi-structural and interior aircraft applications – has developed CETEX composite skins based on Ultem composites and woven glass (or carbon) fibre.

For TenCate’s CETEX System 3 composites, the CETEX skins are attached to the tubular honeycomb core – provided by Tubus Bauer – and can be thermoformed and cut into shapes for structural aircraft exterior and interior components. Tubus Bauer is a German manufacturer of semi-structural and interior aircraft applications.

Sabic say that Ultem composite-based materials also provide flame-smoke-toxicity (FST) performance, low-moisture uptake, thermoformability, and strength retention enabling the composite systems to deliver light-weight performance to eliminate the use of aluminium and thermosets that require long cure cycles.


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