One of the Most Chemically Resistant Plastics

KetaSpire® polyetheretherketone (PEEK) offers a combination of superlative properties that allow it to effectively replace metal in some of the most severe end-use environments.

The structure of the PEEK molecule results in a valuable collection of high-performance characteristics. Aryl groups provide modulus, thermal stability, and flame retardance. Ether linkages provide toughness, ductility, and melt processability. Ketones provide long term thermal-oxidative resistance and polarity for a high melting temperature.

Discover all KetaSpire® PEEK grades

 

Not All PEEK is Created Equal

Not all commercial PEEK products deliver the same level of performance. KetaSpire® PEEK offers distinct performance advantages due to Solvay’s newer polymer production technology. Depending on the grade, KetaSpire® PEEK offers:

  • Better fatigue resistance
  • 20% higher impact strength
  • 60% higher ductility

Processing

Injection Molding

KetaSpire® resins can be readily processed using conventional injection molding equipment. The equipment should be capable of achieving and maintaining the required processing temperatures of up to 385 °C (725 °F) on the injection unit and up to 205 °C (400 °F) on the mold. The molding machine should be equipped with a linear transducer to monitor screw position and should be capable of controlling the polymer injection through a velocity/position profile. The molding machine should have the capability to generate injection pressures of up to 240 bar (35 kpsi) to allow for fast injection.
 

Extrusion

KetaSpire® polyetheretherketone (PEEK) resins can be easily extruded into a variety of shapes using standard extrusion equipment suitable for processing high-temperature semi-crystalline materials. The extrusion process can be used to produce films, sheets, simple profiles, complex profiles, and hollow profiles such as pipe and tubing and coatings for wire and cable.

  • Sheet and Film Extrusion: unfilled KetaSpire® PEEK grades may be extruded into thin films and sheets. Films as thin as 0.025 mm (0.001 inch) have been produced. Most conventional dies may be used. 
  • Tube Extrusion: KetaSpire® PEEK resins may be fabricated into tubes using conventional extrusion equipment designed to process high-temperature semi-crystalline polymers.
  • Profile Extrusion: rod and slab stock shapes as well as complex geometry profiles can be extruded from KetaSpire® PEEK. Generally, the cross-sectional thickness is limited to 50 mm (2 inches). Larger cross-sectional profiles have been successfully extruded, however, they are prone to cracking and internal porosity.
  • Filament: filaments may be extruded using unfilled KetaSpire® PEEK resins. Filament diameters from 0.125 mm (0.005 inch) to 2.5 mm (0.100 inch) can be produced by pulling from a die with an exit diameter of 1.1 to 1.3 times the desired filament diameter. The extrudate should be pulled from the die in the molten state and drawn to the desired diameter. The filament should be preferably air cooled to achieve optimum crystallinity.
  • Wire and Cable Extrusion: KetaSpire® PEEK resins can be easily extruded onto wire or cable using standard extrusion equipment and processing conditions suitable for semi-crystalline materials. KetaSpire® KT-851 was designed specifically for wire coating extrusion. This grade offers excellent melt strength yet can be fabricated into very thin 0.025 mm (0.001 inch) coatings.
     

Compression Molding

KetaSpire® PEEK can be readily fabricated using injection molding or extrusion processes. These processes require capital expenditures for molds and/or dies, but are quite economical for large numbers of molded articles or high volumes of extruded profile. Compression molding provides a useful, cost-effective alternative for producing only a small number of parts or for making shapes larger than those that are practical with these processes.
 

Joining

The thermoplastic nature of KetaSpire® PEEK can be used advantageously to join parts by welding, thermally softening the surfaces to be joined, forcing them together, and cooling them.
 

Welding

The welding processes differ in the manner that the bonding surfaces are heated. Welding KetaSpire® PEEK requires more energy than welding other plastics because of its high melting point. Common welding techniques suitable for KetaSpire® PEEK include spin welding, vibration welding, ultrasonic welding, and laser welding.
 

Coatings

KetaSpire® PEEK is available in powders that can be applied as protective coatings onto metal substrates of various shapes and geometries. Powder grades with different particle sizes are available to enable electrostatic powder coating application and for the formulation of dispersion or slurry coatings.