Zeon Chemicals Joins Forces with Advanced Elastomer Systems

Zeon Chemicals (Zeon) and Advanced Elastomer Systems, L.P. (AES) announced an agreement that gives Zeon exclusive rights to license certain AES technology involving heat and oil-resistant thermoplastic vulcanizates (TPVs). TPVs, a special class of thermoplastic elastomers, offer the feel and performance of thermoset rubber, but process with the ease, convenience, cycle time advantages and recyclability of a thermoplastic. Zeon will combine AES technology with its specialty elastomers to produce and market TPVs capable of withstanding the harsh fluids and the higher temperatures experienced in some of today’s under-the-hood applications in automobiles and in certain industrial environments. Zeon will market the new TPVs under the Zeotherm(TM) trade name. Prototype TPVs based on Zeon’s polyacrylate elastomers (ACM) have proven to have excellent retention of physical properties at 150°C after 1500 hours continuous exposure to automotive oils, transmission fluids, and greases, including synthetics, while maintaining a low hardness range of 70-90 Shore A. Ideal applications for Zeotherm(TM) TPVs include automotive shaft and bearing seals, transmission sealing components, inboard CVJ boots, air ducts, as well as industrial and consumer goods. Initial grades will be based on Zeon’s vulcanized HyTemp® brand polyacrylate elastomer dispersed in nylon and/or polyester thermoplastic matrixes. Zeon plans to develop future grades based on Zetpol® HNBR and Hydrin® ECO elastomers. The materials can be processed via extrusion, injection molding and blow molding. Zeon has sampled limited quantities of acrylate-based TPVs to select customers in North and South America, Europe, and Asia and will commercially launch Zeotherm(TM) in February 2003.

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