CitationDownload as .RIS
Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Copyright © 2012, Emerald Group Publishing Limited
Victrex and Daetwyler create rubber-PEEK polymer composite for sealing applications
Article Type: New materials and equipment From: Anti-Corrosion Methods and Materials, Volume 59, Issue 2
Ideally, seals combine rigidity with flexibility, but finding a suitable material has proved a formidable challenge. VICTREX® PEEK™ polymer and rubber composite delivers a durable, workable solution (Figure 1).
Seals for use in harsh, demanding industrial environments, such as those encountered in the oil, gas or automotive industry, pose a formidable design challenge. The seal has to be precise, tight and durable, to avoid leaks, maintenance downtime or even costly system failure. An elastomer material has to be chosen, e.g. fluoroelastomer (FPM), that will remain durable at high temperatures and also offer good resistance against chemicals such as gasoline or ethylene propylene diene monomer, enabling sealing in a polar medium such as brake fluid. However, while these materials can offer excellent resistance to heat and chemical corrosion, they are usually too soft and flexible for use as seals. Extreme industrial scenarios require seals with additional rigidity and high levels of resistance to creep and deformation to provide durable, tight seal solutions. Furthermore, permeation should be reduced to a minimum for many applications.
To address these challenges, Daetwyler and Victrex Polymer Solutions (VPS), the world leader in Polyaryletherketones, have worked collaboratively to form a composite material that combines VICTREX PEEK polymer and rubber. Their joint investigation focused on combining acrylonitrile butadiene rubber and FPM with VICTREX PEEK-based APTIV® films, with the goal of creating a composite material suitable for seals showing low permeation.
VICTREX PEEK polymer offers higher mechanical and thermal performance levels, compared to other thermoplastics, and excellent chemical resistance, including resistance to hydrolysis. It also exhibits compressive creep resistance at elevated temperatures, resulting in high reliability. The material has also been awarded industry-specific approvals, from the FDA for example.
The results of the Daetwyler-Victrex collaboration are a stunning success. They indicate that the relatively hard VICTREX PEEK polymer can be successfully combined with selected elastomers for the formation of seals using a single composite, thus simplifying the assembly and mount processes.
The resulting composite meets the requirements for rugged industrial seals. It demonstrates low creep under high-mechanical loads, little expansion in the presence of fluids and steam, extremely high-chemical resistance, and very low permeation – and thus offers durable, tight seal solutions.
Victrex and Daetwyler are now keen to discuss the new polymer-rubber composite with potential customers, to establish whether it can answer their specific requirements for high-performance seals in a diverse range of demanding applications.
VPS has over 30 years of experience of working closely with customers in the specialized application of VICTREX PEEK polymer. The collaboration with Daetwyler is further confirmation of the company’s innovative leadership within the global applied thermoplastics industry.
More information is available from: www.victrex.com