PolyOne and Nanocor: New Nanoblend™ Concentrates Improve Stiffness and Flame Retardance

Nanoblend™ concentrates are high-performance materials based on nanocomposite technology. The new concentrates replace traditional mineral or glass reinforcements and flame-retardant additives in a wide variety of resin compounds. Development of the Nanoblend concentrates product family is the first outcome of the strategic alliance between PolyOne and Nanocor Inc., the largest supplier of nanoclays for plastics and a wholly owned subsidiary of AMCOL International Corp.
The Nanoblend concentrate range contains approximately 40% nanoclays in different polymer carriers. This concentrate assists the incorporation and dispersion of the clay to form the nanocomposite structure during final processing. The use of the Nanoblend concentrate helps to overcome some of the earlier difficulties experienced by processors in trying to incorporate nanoclays directly into their compound. By producing a concentrate, PolyOne offers a product that can be used in a wide variety of processes without compromising process parameters.

Nanocomposite technology principally improves stiffness and retains the impact resistance. Enhanced flame retardancy can also be achieved, with the capability to reach UL94 V-0. Nanocomposites have been shown to improve a polymer’s physical properties and can reduce the amount of filler needed to achieve a specific property. For example it can be demonstrated that approximately 1% of nanoclay gives a stiffness equivalent to that obtained with 10% of typical fillers, such as talc. Lighter plastics are attractive in many consumer areas, especially automotive parts, electronic components, appliances and office furniture.
Typical applications of these Nanoblend concentrates are small appliances and electrical enclosures where increased fire resistance, improved physical property retention, reduced relative heat release and non-dripping properties are advantageous. They are also effective for both interior and exterior automotive applications and are typically designed for demanding light and stiff applications, and have improved surface quality and toughness. Other Nanoblend concentrates applications include film, sheet, and wire and cable.

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