Monthly Article Header


Advanced thermoplastics composites (ATPC) are gaining new markets throughout the west and its none too soon. The molding community in general has been looking for that elusive, grassroots, technology since the early eighties. Maybe in (ATPC) they found it.

What are they?

In general, they are a group of new materials, mainly compounds, that are finding new markets for metal and thermoset replacement.

Specifically, they are composites of PEI, PPS, PEK, PEEK, PSUL, PI, PAI, and LCP. They also include those versions available through Pultrusion (long fiber) Technology.

What makes them unique?

The nature of these resins - high heat resistance, superior dimensional stability, inherent flammability, and excellent retention of physical properties in both thermal and chemical environments - coupled with advances in compounding technology, have dramatically increased performance levels.

Can you give some examples?

1. New formulations of good old 40%GF PPS show increases in izod impact (notched) from 1.4 to 4.8 ft-lbs/in.

2. PES and PEI can now be formulated to tighter tolerance ESD levels and tailored to many design features:

i.e. - snap fittings, CLTE values, dimensional stability, and conductivity tolerances.

3. Pultrusion products tend to offer increased modulus (stiffness) and increased impact values with increasing levels of fillers.

4. Long glass fiber composites, due to complete "wet out" of the fibers, offer increased strength values:

Material Ten.str. Flex.str. Comp.str.
50% GF nylon 6 34500 psi 51200 psi  36500 psi
60% GF nylon 6/6 40500 psi 65000 psi 40000 psi
50% GF polycarb. 25100 psi 41700 psi 32700 psi


5. Aramid fiber reinforcement offers excellent wear and abrasion resistance, especially mating surface wear:

Material Ten.str. Flex.str. (n)izod
35% AF nylon 6/6 18300 psi 27400 psi  3.3 ft./lbs
35% AF PPS 1200. psi 21300 psi 2.7 ft./lbs


What markets are available?

Ordinance/defense:  direct metal replacement for struts, frames, braces, bearings, and connectors.

Pump/CPI:  metal replacement due to physical properties, chemical resistance, and wear resistance.

Connectors:  heat resistance, moldability, and dimensional stability make them logical choices.

Power tool housings:  pultruded composites are more aesthetic, and stronger than conventional compounds.

Polypropylene and urethanes now compete in traditional nylon / PBT markets.

Sports/recreation:  everything from rackets to windsurfer components benefit from pultrusion composites.

PCB's:  the moldable printed circuit board market is looking for high heat, uniform CLTE, chemically resistant composites. (ATPC) are gaining more acceptance in this traditional thermoset market.

Where can I get more information?

The plasco network has more information regarding suppliers, distributors and end - user / specifiers. Please feel free to call or write me.

[Return to Materials Archive]

THE PLASCO NEWSLETTER is published by PLASCO INC. Information contained in the newsletter has been taken from sources which we deem reliable. We cannot assure its accuracy. any opinions expressed reflect our judgment and are subject to change. All rights reserved. reproduction or copying in any form, requires written permission from PLASCO INC.
M. LODICO -editor