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Plastics Processing Aids Going Green!

Donald Rosato – Feb 27, 2019

TAGS:  Bio-based Solutions      Processing Aids      Lubricants / Waxes    

Greener Plastics Processing-aidsRecent global shortages in feedstocks have focused many plastic processing aid wax producers on developing new bio-based products.

Processing aid waxes are integral to plastics compounding where they provide improved flow, gloss, and additive dispersion.

Historically there has been a broad range of processing aid waxes based on fossil fuel materials. As a rule, fossil fuel base oils are key to low molecular weight waxes, whereas lignite coal is critical to higher performing montan waxes.

So, with the market pushing towards the bio-based additives, let's take a look at the recent advances in processing aids additives...

Völpker’s Processing Aid Waxes

Völpker’s Processing Aid Waxes
Völpker’s Processing Aid Waxes - Integral to Plastics Compounding

Germany’s Völpker is one of the global leaders in manufacturing traditional wax processing aids for plastics processing. Völpker has commercialized a renewable plant-based, organic ester, CEVO-process J-4418. It acts simultaneously as an excellent polymer flow improver, release agent for molds, and additive/pigment disperser for masterbatch color compounding as well as glass fiber and talc-based compounded systems.

Völpker’s Wax 4418 DIN CERTCO Certification SealThey are used extensively in thermoplastics such as:

Wax 4418 is also useful with thermosets like epoxy, phenolic, and polyurethane. Wax 4418 is DIN CERTCO certified as bio-based, and further meets the criteria for inherent biodegradability (OECD Guideline 301 D, Closed Bottle Test).

Clariant’s Licocare RBW Wax from Rice Grain Feedstock

Clariant has commercialized wax additives based on a value-added, renewable content, rice grain feedstock. Their Licocare® RBW waxes for plastics compounding namely, Licocare® RBW 300 powder TP and Licocare® RBW 102 powder TP are targeted at electrical and electronic and automotive end-use applications where engineering thermoplastics and thermoset epoxies predominate.

These bio-based waxes are non-food competing as they are made from the non-edible component of the rice bran oil. They are highly effective bio-based processing aid replacements for traditional fossil fuel-based montan waxes. As internal and external lubricants they aid in homogenous color pigment and filler dispersion in compounding, mold release due to their:

  • Improved melt flows
  • Higher temperature plastics processing stability
  • Enhanced mechanical toughness, and
  • Improved manufactured part surface finish
Clariant's Licocare RBW Wax
Clariant’s Licocare RBW Wax from Rice Grain Feedstock

Renewable content is a key driver in the global plastics industry. There is a current business environment composed of more:

  • Environmentally conscious consumers
  • Climate change advocates
  • Socially focused government regulations, and
  • Business sponsored renewability targets

Stated simply, eco-friendliness will remain an ongoing future trend for plastics suppliers, manufacturers, and end-users.

Clariant’s Licocare® RBW Renewably Based Rice Grain Feedstock
Clariant’s Licocare® RBW Renewably Based Rice Grain Feedstock

Emery Oleochemicals’ Bio-based Processing Aids

Emery Oleochemicals’ Loxiol® G 24 is both an external lubricant and release agent plastics processing aid that is based on 100% renewable resources. Also, it is effective in replacing more traditional, fossil fuel-based waxes.

Application development wise Loxiol® G 24 is well suited for the extrusion of:

  • Rigid PVC (and C-PVC, Chlorinated PolyVinyl Chloride) pipes
  • PVC (PolyVinyl Chloride) profiles
  • Injection molding of PVC, as well as
  • Processing of chlorine-free resins

It is stable over a wide temperature range, has low volatility, and in combination with a traditional Loxiol® G 59 processing aid is compatible with calcium zinc stabilizers as an internal/external lubricant system.

Target Applications for Emery Bio-based Loxiol® G24 Processing Aids
C-PVC Pipe (L), PVC Window Profile (R) Target Applications for Emery Bio-based Loxiol® G 24 Processing Aids

Commercially Available Plastics Processing Aids

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