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PEEK Replaces Aluminum in EV Components

Image: Solvay auto parts made from KT-850 SCF 30
Brake systems and e-mobility electronic pumps are among the target parts.

Solvay has launched a new grade of KetaSpire PEEK (polyetheretherketone), KT-850 SCF 30, for precision brake system and e-mobility electronic pump components.

Carbon-fiber-filled PEEK traditionally has been used for anti-lock brake system (ABS) and electronic stability control (ESC) components, such as tappets, poppets, and plungers. The new KT-850 SCF 30 grade enables further metal replacement by improving the flow characteristics of the material and the surface finish of parts.

ABS/ESC plungers play a critical role in the function of the hydraulic unit. The system combines an electronic pump, electronic control unit (ECU), valves that control braking pressure at the wheels, and sensors that measure the speed of the wheels. The plunger is responsible for operating the valve’s movement by controlling the brake fluid supply.

Replacing metal with polymeric plungers requires a material like KetaSpire KT-850 SCF 30, which provides a balance of high-performance properties including coefficient of friction, mechanical strength, dimensional tolerance control, and sealing capability, said Solvay.

The replacement of aluminum in precision components, such as ABS plungers, allows for overall cost reductions as well as improved productivity. KetaSpire KT-850 SCF 30 offers the flowability required for filling the parts, which are approximately 15 mm in length, while also meeting the tight tolerances needed for ABS/ESC plungers. KetaSpire KT-850 SCF 30 reportedly outperformed the processability offered by incumbent materials, allowing for much higher production yields and an enhanced surface finish, enabling better sealing and mechanical performance.

“The new carbon-filled KetaSpire PEEK grade comes at a critical time when manufacturers are looking for enhanced sealing and mechanical performance. This means it is a real solution for the e-mobility market, and we are proud it is part of our complete range of high-performance solutions for brake systems,” said Brian Baleno, Head of Marketing – Transportation at Solvay’s Materials Segment. “The specialized portfolio also includes Amodel PPA for ABS/ESC pistons, motor end caps, solenoids, brake booster sensors, and e-parking brake housings; Ryton PPS for brake pistons and valve housings; and Fomblin PFPE for electric parking brake lubricants.”

TAGS: Materials
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