In high heat environments such as arch quenching or lead-free soldering, producers are usually forced to use thermosets with higher processing (molding) costs or more expensive high heat materials. The Xtreme LNP Starflam compounds from SABIC Innovative Plastics combine the
typical advantages of polyamide‚â€™s easy processing and good electrical and mechanical properties with the short term heat performance of high heat polymers and thermosets at lower costs. Better production yields, such as being able to regrind the sprue and the more stable and faster molding cycle times can sometimes outweigh the added costs of the E-beam radiation step that is required after molding to boost the heat performance. SABIC expects these products to be widely adopted for demanding electrical applications as well as for connectors subjected to the stress of lead-free soldering.
The Xtreme LNP Starflam compounds are based on a technology that forms chemical bonds between the PA macromolecules under E-beam radiation. After irradiation, the material can withstand exposure to temperatures decades higher than standard PA. A standard PA would melt or deform; however Xtreme LNP Starflam maintains its rigidity and mechanical integrity.
The four new compounds include two grades featuring non-brominated, non-chlorinated flame retardants that comply with environmental regulations such as as the EU‚â€™s Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE), Restriction of Hazardous Substances (RoHS) directives, and other eco labels. The other two non-FR grades offer excellent mechanical properties, ductility, and softness.
The compounds provide mechanical properties, part weight, and design freedom similar to those of standard polyamides. They can be processed in the same tools as the equivalent traditional grade and use standard E-beam radiation technology ‚â€“ the same that is used for medical device sterilization. The one-granule solution of the Xtreme LNP Starflam Series offers excellent part-to-part consistency in both properties and color.
Applications for the flame-retardant grades include internals for contactors, internals for miniature circuit breakers (MCBs) and molded case circuit breakers (MCCBs), connectors for electronics, and virtually any small or medium-size part that is subjected to short-term temperatures above the melting point of polyamide. The non-FR grades suit under-the-hood automotive applications or parts in HVAC equipment.
SABIC Innovative Plastics
Filed Under: Semiconductor, Materials • advanced