high performance plastics

High performance plastics

In modern industry, "performance" is a must. It can cover many aspects concerning quality, efficiency, durability, speed, throughput or resistance to external factors. The aim is to have applications that run smoothly, with minimum maintenance, at the best cost to performance ratio.  Within our material portfolio, you will certainly find the high performance plastics you need for your applications.

High performance plastics typically have a permanent operating temperature of more than 150°C. It is this material class that brings the superior properties of polymers - such as sliding friction characteristics, weight saving and chemical resistance - to bear, especially, a high permanent operating temperatures. Using special reinforcing materials such as glass fibre, glass beads or carbon fibre, heat distortion resistance and rigidity can be increased even further. Additives such as PTFE, graphite and aramid fibres considerably improve the sliding friction characteristics, and the addition of metal fibres and carbon black provide improved electrical conductivity.

High temperature resistance

Heat resistant plastic materials are constantly being developed, and becoming more common both in traditional and in high end industrial applications to improve performance and durability.

Common understanding may be that plastics are not normally considered as heat resistant materials. However, the truth is that there are whole families of high performance polymers which may be used at permanent service temperatures of more than 150°C up to over 300°C depending on the operating conditions.

These materials, characterised by elevated glass transition and melting temperatures, are the best candidates when it comes to metal replacement as polymers provide the added value of superior properties such as sliding friction characteristics, weight saving, and chemical resistance. These advantages can be maintained, even at high permanent operating temperatures. High temperature polymers are commercially available both as unmodified heat resistant materials and as modified high performance thermoplastics.

By adding reinforcements, such as glass or carbon fibers, stiffness and heat distortion temperature can be improved, along with the additional benefit of dimensional stability. This is possible thanks to lower thermal expansion rates that can get close to values typical of some metal alloys. Carbon fiber reinforced plastic is currently the most interesting solution when operating conditions require extreme stiffness and mechanical properties with the lowest weight possible, for instance, in aerospace or automotive applications.

For applications that require abrasion resistance, wear or a low friction coefficient, these engineering plastics offer superior performance when compounded with lubricants such as PTFE and graphite. Moreover, the intrinsically good electrical insulating characteristics of these thermoplastics can be modified to achieve static dissipative or electrically conductive qualities.

Manufacturer of High Performance Plastics

The following high performance plastics are manufactured by Ensinger:
The product range of high performance plastics stock shapes comprises:
  • Rods
  • Plates and sheets
  • Tubes

High performance polymers in applications

Some of the most important areas of application for high temperature plastics are:

  • Applications that require abrasion resistance, wear or a low friction coefficient, these engineering plastics offer superior performance when compounded with lubricants such as PTFE and graphite
  • Heat and shock resistant applications in the glass and aerospace industries
  • Heat resistant, emission proof, highly insulating or defined conducting materials for the semiconductor and electrical engineering industry
  • Sterilisation and hydrolysis proof parts for medical devices
  • Emission proof and radiation resistant components for vacuum technology and applications in the areas of X-ray technology and nuclear energy
  • Components for the chemical industry