GLS Thermoplastic Elastomers Patents Universal Polyamide Overmolding TPE29 Apr 2009 • by Natalie Aster
GLS Thermoplastic Elastomers, a PolyOne business and global leader in high-performance, custom-formulated thermoplastics elastomers (TPEs), announced the issue of a patent for the universal overmolding TPE platform for polyamide (PA). Based on VERSAFLEX™ chemistry, the patented technology delivers consistent bonding and performance with any type of PA, regardless of the supplier, chemistry or additives, using either insert or two-shot molding under a broad range of processing conditions.
GLS has solved one of the perennial challenges of the TPE industry by developing the universal nylon overmolding grade that bonds to a full range of PA materials. The patented technology will initially fulfill needs within the power tool market, where a variety of PA substrates are used. In addition, the material can provide excellent aesthetics, enhanced ergonomics, comfort, a non-slip grip, and shock absorbency. The GLS Thermoplastic Elastomers patent, US 7,435,776, was issued Oct. 14, 2008.
"Polyamide is the material of choice for power tool housings, but for ergonomic comfort and appearance, the handles are enhanced with TPEs," said Dr. Krishna Venkataswamy, senior director, global TPE technology, GLS Thermoplastic Elastomers. "The industry has been frustrated for quite some time because there was no single TPE that could deliver dependable overmolding results with PA substrates from various suppliers. Our new solution is a best-in-class industry product with a great balance of properties and excellent bond strength."
These materials are designed to bond to a wide array of polyamide substrates, including grades reinforced with glass fiber, or those containing various additives. TPEs compounded with this technology also have exceptional colorability and process easily, are not sensitive to polyamide molding conditions such as humidity or to post-mold aging conditions, and can be overmolded onto PA using insert molding or two-shot molding.
As a custom compounder, GLS Thermoplastic Elastomers offers extensive resources for customizing these grades to meet specific requirements for feel, modulus, hardness and other properties. The company also offers custom coloring services.