Victrex Polymer Solutions (West Conshohocken, Pa.), a manufacturer of polyaryletherketone resins, and Tissa Glasweberei AG (Oberkulm, Switzerland), a specialist in continuous-fiber glass weaving techniques, have codeveloped composite fabrics to be marketed under Tissa’s brand name TIXPREF. Made from unidirectional tapes formed with S-2 Glass, supplied by AGY (Aiken S.C.), or carbon fibers that have been fully impregnated with high-performance VICTREX PEEK (polyetheretherketone) polymer, the TIXPREF composite fabrics are designed to help reduce cycle time up to 50 percent in press-forming operations. Tissa’s TIXPREF fabrics offer good mechanical properties that result from high fiber content of up to 65 percent. Because they are thermoplastic, TIXPREF fabrics are said to have a higher damage tolerance when compared to thermoset-based fabrics, high fatigue strength and stiffness and good integration of the fiber with the matrix, resulting in a longer life. They reportedly include a service temperature of up to 260°C/500°F, resistance to harsh chemicals and solvents and exceptional wear resistance, to provide good mechanical properties under static and dynamic load conditions. Tissa also says it has developed noncrimp fabrics (NCFs), again using VICTREX PEEK, for use in aerospace, industrial and medical applications that do not have complex-shaped parts, such as flat structures and panels. By heating the prepregs and press forming for two to three minutes, a panel as thin as 2 mm/0.078 inch is possible. However, the use of specialized molds enables production of parts with strips or inserts, or both. Samples are available.
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