New Thermoplastic Recycling Solution From Toho Tenax Europe

Toho Tenax Co., Ltd. announced that its German subsidiary, Toho Tenax Europe GmbH (TTE) has developed a new compound, based on recycled thermoplastic carbon fiber materials and PEEK (polyetheretherketone) thermoplastic.

A serial aircraft wing access panel was manufactured as a piece of demonstrator parts. The closed-loop-concept from production residues via Tenax-E Compound to final parts was the awarded winner at JEC Asia 2016 in the category of Recycling in Singapore last November. At JEC World 2017 from March 14th to 16th in Paris, Toho Tenax will exhibit thermoplastic recycling solutions and several application options.

Tenax-E Compound rPEEK CF30 is a reinforced material combination of waste materials generated during the processing of Tenax ThermoPlastics and recycled semi-crystalline PEEK polymer, which contains 30% carbon fiber by weight and offers high performance in strength and stiffness for injection molding applications.

This compound has an almost identical performance to virgin standard material in terms of tensile modulus and strength, which also includes elongation, viscosity, chemical resistance, abrasion and very low moisture to absorption ratio, to round off the highlight characteristics of this recycled material. The created value of this compound is linked to the combination of high-performance materials as well as low cost of 40-60% compared to virgin carbon fiber reinforced PEEK compounds.

In conjunction with its partners, an OEM aircraft manufacturer and the Sintex NP Group, a serial aircraft wing access panel was manufactured to demonstrate the performance of the recycled granules. The Sintex NP Group was selected as the partner responsible for the parts manufacturing process based on Tenax-E Compound rPEEK CF30 and the assessment of material processability compared to today’s virgin material standards within their production processes. It was shown that it could combine the best performance with full manufacturing and design flexibility without any parameter adjustments in the production chain. This way, Tenax-E Compound rPEEK CF30 is able to reduce parts costs significantly.

TTE and Teijin Kasei Europe (TKE) will cover the European market. Falk Ansorge, Sales Manager Aerospace at TTE, says, “By separating the market into aerospace, industry and automotive, both companies can use their strengths in the corresponding market segments.”

TTE will concentrate on creating applications in the aerospace field. TKE already supplies PC, PC/ABS and PC alloy compounds to various industries mainly for automotive applications, so their product range is ideally widely expanded with Tenax-E Compound rPEEK CF30.