3B-the fibreglass company broadens long fibre thermoplastic (LFT) product range with SE4535 – a new single-end roving for polyamide composites.

Battice, Belgium – September 27, 2011 – 3B-the fibreglass company demonstrates its leading role as the provider of innovative glass reinforcement solutions with the introduction of SE4535 – a new direct single-end roving for long fibre thermoplastic polyamide (LFT PA) composites. 

The new roving is now commercially available globally and complements the existing and successful SE4220 dedicated to LFT PP (polypropylene) compounds. It definitely highlights 3B’s commitment to be a major player in LFT reinforcements.

The market for LFT reinforcements has experienced very strong growth in recent years with up to 85 percent used solely in the automotive industry. Although polypropylene (PP) resin dominates the materials being employed at present, the opportunities for alternative polymers such as polyamide (PA) are clearly established for the more demanding applications.

Eric Martin, Business Development Leader at 3B: “Metal substitution has entered a new phase, stretching even further the performance limits of thermoplastic materials. If the key incentives remain system cost reduction, greater design flexibility and significant weight savings, performance requirements are equally being targeted to allow for more complex functional integration, higher energy-absorption over a wide temperature range and very low warpage.”

Nowadays, long fibre reinforced thermoplastics are materials of choice for lightweight design especially for large semi-structural components or high loading parts in automotive, domestic appliances, or power tool applications.

“Resin differentiation mainly through polyamide clearly opens new opportunities, as in engine mounts, crash absorbers, seat structure inserts and safety parts. To pursue LFT penetration into these more challenging applications, 3B fully demonstrates its ability to provide reliable cost competitive leading-edge reinforcement solutions, such as the new SE 4535 grade”, adds Eric Martin.

The glass fibre constitutes a critical structural element of LFT reinforced composites by creating an entangled 3D glass skeleton within the final moulded part. This skeleton provides outstanding physical properties and characteristics such as dimensional stability and resistance to distorsion, inhibited crack propagation and improved impact resistance at both high and low temperatures.

Paul Cazes, Thermoplastic Product Leader at 3B added: “3B’s new SE4535 roving benefits from the company’s long innovative experience in reinforcements for polyamide. The proprietary sizing chemistry is specifically engineered to provide excellent wet out, optimum resin-fibre load transfer and adhesion for exceptional mechanical performances.”

“Excellent impregnation and high speed processability make it suitable for all LFT processes (G-LFT, D-LFT, etc).  Expansion of 3B’s LFT reinforcements’ portfolio will continue to progress in the future to meet emerging market requirements,” he concluded.

The new SE4535 roving from 3B is available in 17µm at 1200tex (SE4535 17 1200) and 2400tex (SE4535 17 2400). It is manufactured from Advantex® glass fibre which combines the electrical and mechanical properties of traditional E-glass with the corrosion resistance and durability of an E-CR glass (ASTM D578).

Caption:

3B’s SE 4535 17µm 2400tex product benchmarked against the best current market offering highlighting the performance of this new LFT PA grade.