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Characterization of Polyetheretherketone and Other Engineering Thermoplastics,

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Three engineering thermoplastic materials were characterized by thermalspectroscopic means to assess their suitability in fiberglass-filled molding resins for Mound applications. The three resins examined were polyetheretherketone PEEK from ICI, Ltd., polyetherimide PEI from General Electric, and polyethersulfone PES from ICI. Thermogravimetric analysis of the three thermoplastics in N2 showed that all had a decomposition onset temperature or 525 deg C with PEEK PEI PES. Melt thermal stability analyses of glass-filled PEEK and of PEI showed 1 weight loss after 2 hr N2. Thermomechanical analysis TMA of glass-filled PEEK revealed a low temperature approx. 60-70 deg C transition below Tg approx. 150 deg C. This transition disappeared on subsequent TMA runs and did not reappear on aging at room temperature, which suggests it was the result of molding stresses. Extra transitions below Tg were also noted for PES and PEI. Direct probemass spectroscopy reconstructed ion chromatograms showed water and phenyl sulfone ions to be present in both PES and PEEK and volatilized below 200 deg C in vacuum. Water only was observed in PEI. The presence of phenyl sulfone in PEEK was confirmed by FT-IR, and sulfur was found in amounts up to 0.23 by weight in 30 glass-filled molding compounds. A polymerization solvent, such as diphenyl sulfone, is a probable source. Fluoride from a monomer used in the PEEK polymerization was also detected in amounts up to 0.17 by weight in the 30 fiberglass molding compounds. jg p6

Subject Categories:

  • Polymer Chemistry
  • Organic Chemistry
  • Plastics

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