K 2022 preview: Engineered materials for sustainability and e-mobility

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Lanxess is launching new Tepex composites based on recycled or biosourced raw materials, including one based on flax fibers and PLA and one with a nylon 6 matrix based on “green” cyclohexane and more than 80% sustainable materials. (Photo: Lanxess High Performance Materials)

Here is a brief overview of the type of new materials technologies you can expect to see showcased at K 2022. Based on information provided in advance by five key materials and additives suppliers, this offers insight into what which is being developed to meet sustainability goals across the globe. supply chain and in particular in the growing sector of e-mobility. Many more news covering a wide range of industry sectors will be forthcoming in our September K 2022 preview.

Durable high performance styrenes and nylons

Styrolytion Ineos developed Luran S Eco B with up to 50% renewable content (bio-attributed), which would be the first bio-based ASA (acrylonitrile styrene acrylate) resin on the market. It is based on the company’s Luran S ASA, used in the construction industry and automotive exterior parts, as well as toys and sports/recreational applications. The Eco B version is produced from renewable raw materials such as domestic kitchen and/or wood waste. LCA analysis shows that Luran S Eco B products will offer up to 58% lower carbon footprint than the respective fossil products.

Also new from Ineos Styrolution are four grades of mechanically recycled Novadur Eco and Novadur Eco HH ABS resins for household appliances and automotive, respectively. Up to 100% PCR content is possible, depending on the application, and color options (eg red and blue) will be available in addition to black and white.

As a fully integrated producer of sustainable materials, Ascend Performance Materials boasts a unique ability to tailor nylon resin chemistry and global blending expertise to help achieve sustainability goals. The company’s recent acquisition of Italy’s Poliblend, a manufacturer of high-performance compounds derived from PCR, has led Ascend to redefine its materials portfolio to have a combination of PIR and PCR content. Ascend will also begin manufacturing and using bio-based raw materials for nylons. By 2023, the company will offer bio-based acrylonitrile, hexamethylene diamine and nylons based on these. At K 2022, the company will launch half a dozen glass-filled nylon compounds with 20-40% biocontent:

▪ Vydyne Thermaplus is a new high temperature, high ductility nylon 66 technology platform for clips and fasteners. It is designed to replace DSM’s Stanyl 46 nylon. The new Ascend materials offer better thermal stability and they have gained commercial applications in e-mobility where they are used in fasteners.

▪ Comprehensive portfolio of UL “yellow card” certified Starflam FR nylons for a variety of performance requirements. The company’s recent acquisition of French-based Eurostar Engineering Plastics, a maker of flame retardants, is key to Ascend’s plans to become a major player in e-mobility and electrical components.

▪ HiDura is a growing portfolio of long chain nylon 610 and 612 for injection molded consumer goods and connectors, as well as copolymers for films that make packaging more durable. Grades are introduced with 40% to 60% biobased content.

▪ Ascend e-mobility application development engineers and polymer scientists have created what is said to be a novel solution to dampen NVH in electric vehicles. EV motors produce vibration at 10 times the frequency of internal combustion engines, making standard underhood damping materials less effective. Vydyne AVS 66 nylon is a new engineered material that is said to be effective in dampening high frequency vibrations at the engine, resulting in an 80% reduction in cabin sound pressure.

Meanwhile, DSM Engineering Materials has developed what is said to be the first 100% bio-based high temperature nylon, in this case a more durable version of its flagship product Stanyl. The new Stanyl B-MB (Biobased Mass Balanced), with up to 100% biobased content from raw materials from biomass waste, allows DSM to halve the carbon footprint of this product line.

Ineos Styrolution now offers ASA resins with bio-based content

Ineos Styrolution’s new Luran S Eco B has up to 50% renewable content and will offer up to 85% lower carbon footprint compared to fossil-based Luran S. (Photo: Ineos Styrolution)

Other New Sustainable Engineering Resins

Lanxess’ High Performance Materials business unit also focuses on sustainable materials and lightweight solutions. Main areas are materials and component concepts for lightweight construction in the developing e-mobility market, e.g. lightweight structural components based on Tepex-branded continuous fiber composites in the field of passenger car batteries .

Lanxess will present new Tepex composites based on recycled or biosourced raw materials. An example is the brand new Tepex dynalite Scopeblue 813, which is produced from flax fibers and PLA biopolymer. Also on hand will be a Tepex dynalite with a nylon 6 matrix which is produced from ‘green’ cyclohexane and uses over 80% sustainable raw materials.

Another focus is on tailored solutions for powertrains or electric vehicle charging infrastructure. Here, the plastic components are often exposed to higher temperatures and at the same time to very high electrical currents and voltages. Plastic connectors, for example, must remain electrically insulating under these conditions and must not allow “leakage” current to occur. Lanxess is launching a new halogen-free, flame retardant and hydrolytically stabilized PBT compound for these high voltage connectors.

SABIC will focus on two key areas at K 2022: the circular economy for plastics and a clean air economy through the transition to product electrification. Road transport representing a significant share of total global CO2 emissions, SABIC’s new BlueHero program will build on the company’s established materials and capabilities to help the automotive value chain move ever closer to a tailpipe-free world, with a focus on improving battery structural components with unique flame retardant materials and solution development expertise. Examples of materials include Stamax FR LGF-PP and SABIC FR PP compounds. The latter is used on Honda’s Edison Award-winning battery cover. Other materials, also offered in FR grades, include Lexan PC, Cycoloy PC/ABS and Valox PBT. The company plans to strengthen and expand its thermoplastics offering to enable electrification with the increased focus and new investments that will be available under Bluehero.

SABIC's New Bluehero Product Ecosystem

SABIC’s new Bluehero program is designed to help accelerate the global energy transition from fossil fuels to electric power with a particular focus on enhancing the structural components of EV batteries with unique flame retardant materials. (Photo: SABIC)

SABIC will also highlight its Trucircle program to accelerate the plastics industry’s transition to a circular economy. SABIC’s new certified biorenewable PP compounds are for high performance automotive applications, from painted or unpainted bumpers and exterior trim to interior door panels, dashboards and visible interior trim. Stamax certified biorenewable long glass PP compounds are for structural automotive applications such as front struts, dash mounts, tailgate structures, door modules and others. The new SABIC PP compounds and Stamax resins could replace the corresponding fossil-based SABIC grades without the need for lengthy technical validation, as they offer exactly the same level of performance and quality.

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