Polyurethane foam products with a certain something will be showcased at the Milliken & Co. (Spartanburg, SC) booth at Foam Expo North America 2019 next week. That something, of course, are colorants and other additives, which Milliken supplies globally, that reduce foam emissions and improve indoor—and in-car—air quality. The company is exhibiting at booth 1810 at the event, which comes to Novi, MI, from March 26 to 28.
Featured products include Milliken’s Reactint line for polyurethane (PU), which is described as a reactive polymeric liquid colorant that consists of chromophores that chemically bind to polyols. The colorant reacts into the polyurethane polymer matrix, yielding deep, vibrant shades of foam, according to Milliken. It produces a variety of primary colors in PU slabstock, including blue, orange, red, yellow, violet and black, but custom blends also can be formulated to make virtually any color of the rainbow.
Color helps to give a brand identity to the foam and suggests that the product has certain qualities, said Milliken. It also highlights differentiating characteristics such as comfort, resilience or breathability that PU foam can bring to any product.
Also on display at Foam Expo, Milliguard AOX antioxidant additives protect PUs and other thermoset polymers from oxidation and degradation. Specially designed to support polyurethane flexible foamers, polyol suppliers, foam converters and other PU producers, the additive improves the quality and durability of final PU parts by preventing odor-causing degradation byproducts and discoloration caused by exposure to light, heat and nitrogen oxide pollution. This polymeric additive also helps producers to meet stringent environmental and air quality standards by reducing volatile organic compound (VOC) and outgassing condensation (FOG) emissions.
“Milliken continues to develop technologies that help to improve vehicle interior air quality and meet the newest, most stringent automotive industry requirements,” said Jesse Shoultz, Global Product Line Manager, PU Colorants & Additives. “Milliguard AOX technology plays an important role in reducing the generation of aldehydes in PU foam, but Milliken is still investing in development activities to bring other aldehyde reduction solutions to the market.”
Another Milliken product line—Milliguard UVX UV absorbers—protects PU from yellowing and degradation caused by exposure to UV light. Supplied in liquid form for easy handling and metering, the products help PU producers and converters to deliver fresh, long-lasting urethane products with lower VOC and FOG emissions. These UV absorbers, reactive in nature, are widely used in PU for textile foam and automotive applications, said Milliken.