DSM Engineering Plastics (Evansville, Ind.) has expanded its EcoPaXX line of bio-based, high-performance engineering plastics. EcoPaXX is a polyamide (PA) 410 that features low moisture absorption and good chemical resistance, with high melting point (250°C/482°F) and high crystallization rate. EcoPaXX bio content is 70 percent, consisting of building blocks derived from castor oil as a renewable resource. Further, EcoPaXX has been shown to be 100 percent carbon neutral, which means that the carbon dioxide generated during the production process of the polymer is fully compensated by the amount of carbon dioxide absorbed in the growth phase of the castor beans. Presently, both the Life Cycle Assessment and the Carbon Footprint analysis are being validated against the international standards ISO14040/44 and PAS2050.
The five new grades include:
- EcoPaXX Q150-D, a general purpose, unfilled injection molding grade
- EcoPaXX Q-HG6 and Q-HG10: glass-reinforced (30 and 50 percent), heat-stabilized injection molding grades. These materials can be used for applications where high stiffness and toughness are needed. Benefits include chemical resistance, resistance against hot water/glycol and hot oil, easy processability and mold temperatures of 80 to 90°C (176 to 194°F).
- EcoPaXX Q-HGM24, a glass/mineral reinforced injection molding grade, suited for the injection molding of large parts. Potential applications include automotive engine covers.
- EcoPaXX Q-KGS6, a halogen-free flame-retardant, glass-reinforced (30 percent) compound (V-0 at 0.75 mm).
EcoPaXX Q-HG6, Q-HG10 and Q-HGM24 will be available on a commercial scale as of November 2010, while EcoPaXX Q150-D and Q-KGS6 will be available in sample quantities from January 2011.