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New flame retardant compounds to aid customer compliance with EU Directives

GE Advanced Materials : 03 August, 2004  (New Product)
ECO-FR technology from LNP provides a high performance halogen-free and red phosphorus-free solution that satisfies the upcoming WEEE directive for E&E applications.
Six new grades of Starflam ECO-FR compounds have been added to the LNP Product Line of GE Advanced Materials. The new materials which are based on glass fibre reinforced PA6, PA66 and PA66/6 have been combined with the new X-GEN ECO-FR technology to provide a wide range of performance options coupled with halogen-free and red phosphorus-free flame retardancy.

Key is that the new Starflam ECO-FR compounds will help electrical and electronic application OEMs to avoid the cost and administrative impact of upcoming EU legislation, which will impose new rules on the end of life disposal of components containing halogenated flame retardants.

Each of the new Starflam ECO-FR compounds has been developed to provide a wide range of properties that include excellent impact performance, tight tolerance, high modulus and excellent electrical properties together with V-0 flame retardancy.

Compliant with current and anticipated European directives on Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) and the Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment (RoHS), the new Starflam ECO-FR compounds will enable OEMs to meet the increasing demand for eco-label applications.

All of the new grades are characterized generally by their robust flammability UL94 V-O at 0.8mm thickness (previously only achievable using a halogen formulation), high CTI 600V, GWFT at 1.5mm 960C and HDT from 200C up to 250C. Moreover, they offer very good surface finish, are available in all colours and are laser markable.

Starflam PF1005Z270 and PF1007Z270 resin, respectively 25% GF and 35% GF PA6 based products, combine a very robust UL94 VO performance and excellent processing behaviour together with higher mechanical properties that include an E modulus above 9GPa and tensile strength of more than 145MPa. Starflam RF1004Z270 and RF1005Z270 resin, respectively 20% GF and 25% GF PA66 based products, have been developed to meet additionally the needs of high heat resistant applications. Starflam RF1007Z270EM and RF1009Z270EM resin, respectively 35% GF and 45% GF, PA66/6 based products, have been designed specifically to meet the highest mechanical requirements including an E modulus above 11 GP and tensile strength of more than 160 MPa combined with good processing behaviour.

Kamel Gueyouche, Starflam product manager for GE Advanced Materials, says: We are very excited about these new STARFLAM compounds. After many years of development we are now able to offer a strong combination of a flammability performance as good as that of brominated products and a mechanical performance in line with grades containing Red Phosphorus; in addition these compounds are based on ECO-FR technology and available in all colours. The ECO-FR compositions drive elimination of emissions and contact erosion while their good flow characteristics enable the easy moulding of small intricate parts with best-in-class surface finish.

We are now able to meet the requirements for most types of applications, from MCCBs using low filled PA 6 Starflam compounds to very demanding industrial applications, such as High Voltage switchgears, contactors and relay housings, where high glass filled 6/6.6 Starflam copolymers offer high mechanical properties, coupled with high CTI and excellent dielectric strength, as well as excellent processing behaviour and thereby presenting a strong alternative for thermoset replacements.

Headquartered in Exton, Pennsylvania, USA, LNP Engineering Plastics, a GE Advanced Materials business component, is a global leader in the custom compounding of engineering thermoplastics. The company operates 11 manufacturing plants throughout the US, Canada, Mexico, Europe, Asia-Pacific and South America. LNP is known for innovative, value-added products and speedy development of viable solutions for its customers. The LNP product portfolio includes a wide range of specialty compounds for information technology, automotive, health care, industrial, and consumer applications.
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