The problems with injection molding conventional PLA are well known, not least of which are its low heat resistance and limited injection-molding capability because of PLA’s increased cycle time. Teijin and Panasonic Electric Works announced their joint development of heat-resistant polylactide (PLA) molding compound made from 80% plant-based renewable feedstock and providing significantly reduced molding cycle time of around half that of conventional PLA compounds.
Panasonic Electric Works will begin selling the new material as its MBA900H PLA molding compound for use in cell phone housings and other mobile devices and digital consumer electronics. The initial goal is to produce 1000 tons of MBA900H PLA annually by fiscal 2012..
The bioplastic used in the MBA900H is Teijin’s Biofront, a high-heat resistant PLA with a melting point of at least 210ºC, which is significantly higher than that of conventional PLA. Biofront also shows better hydrolytic stability and achieves semi-crystallization in just 20-25% of the time required with conventional PLA. —[email protected]