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During vehicle use, elevated temperatures activates smart technology, leading to rapid cross-linking that boosts mechanical properties far beyond initial values.

Stephen Moore

November 14, 2016

2 Min Read
Solvay launches polyamide grades employing “Smart Molecule” heat performance technology

At the recent K Show in Düsseldorf, Germany,  Solvay launced Technyl REDx, a new heat performance polyamide (PA) 66) integrating a unique “smart molecule” self-reinforcement technology. The 35% glass fiber-reinforced material reportedly outperforms conventional specialty polymers in demanding thermal management systems, especially in the automotive industry.

Mechanical properties of Technyl REDx tested after molding (initial) and after heat exposure at 220°C.

‘Smart molecule’ technology  makes Technyl REDx ideal for highly demanding charge air coolers according to Solvay.

“Today, more than 12 million engines use Technyl heat performance technologies. Our materials enable car manufacturers to overcome engine downsizing constraints, such as greatly increased temperatures and pressures,” says Dr. James Mitchell, Global Automotive Market Director for Solvay Engineering Plastics. However, “There is a need for new material solutions which resist the higher continuous heat stress of new generation engines without compromising on costs and performance,” he notes.

To address this challenge, Solvay developed Technyl REDx, a smart molecule material including a patented self-strengthening technology present in the polymer chain without affecting its structure. This new technology remains inactive during injection molding of car parts, leaving the material behaving like a high-flow PA66. During the vehicle’s use, the elevated temperatures activate the smart technology, leading to rapid cross-linking that boosts the mechanical properties far beyond their initial values.

Technyl REDx can also be processed at energy-saving mold temperatures below 100°C, allowing simple and cost efficient manufacturing. Ageing tests over 3000 hours at 220°C demonstrate very high retention property as well as tensile property gain of more than 50 percent, without degradation of elongation at break.

“By providing long-term thermal stability, superior processability and excellent surface aspect, Technyl REDx opens up completely new possibilities for high-heat applications with lower material and manufacturing costs,” explains Antoine Guiu, Technyl REDx Project Leader. “Intrinsically heat-friendly, Technyl REDx eliminates the need for heat shields that may be required when using conventional materials.”

About the Author(s)

Stephen Moore

Stephen has been with PlasticsToday and its preceding publications Modern Plastics and Injection Molding since 1992, throughout this time based in the Asia Pacific region, including stints in Japan, Australia, and his current location Singapore. His current beat focuses on automotive. Stephen is an avid folding bicycle rider, often taking his bike on overseas business trips, and is a proud dachshund owner.

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