LANXESS helps reduce carbon footprint with PA6 high performance plastics

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LANXESS brand Durethan polyamide 6 compounds are not only cost-effective alternatives to polyamide 66-based compounds, but are also much more climate-friendly. This is according to calculations made by the specialty chemicals company based on its own data and figures published by various institutions, including various plastics industry associations. “With 3.66 tonnes of CO2 equivalents emitted per metric tonne of material produced, the carbon footprint of our Polyamide 6 resin is well over 40% lower than the current European industry published average for Polyamide 66,” says Dr. Guenter Margraf , Head of Sustainability and Product Stewardship at High Performance Materials. “The carbon footprint of our polyamide 6 compounds is therefore also smaller, which is why they are the perfect substitute for polyamide 66.”

Glass fibers made from waste glass

The carbon footprint of LANXESS’ Polyamide 6 compounds can be further reduced by producing them not from conventional glass fibers, but from the resource-friendly Eco glass fibers developed by the company. Industrial glass waste is used in their production, which reduces the consumption of raw materials and energy and avoids waste. “The carbon footprint of our Eco glass fibers is about two-thirds lower than that of conventional glass fibers,” says Margraf. LANXESS offers the corresponding compounds which are mass-balanced in accordance with ISCC Plus (“International Sustainability and Carbon Certification”) under the Durethan ECO brand. They contain up to 60% by weight of recycled fibres. Mass balancing makes it possible to determine the share of durable material in the compound and to indicate this transparently for processors.

Lightweight design for a reduced carbon footprint

Under the HiAnt name, LANXESS offers a range of services designed to support customers in the transition from polyamide 66 to polyamide 6. These services range from joint concept development for component design and materials optimization to methods advanced in computer-aided computing. engineering (CAE) to predict component properties. “The right choice of material and a weight-optimized component design – for example, making the walls less thick where they are subjected to lower loads and optimally positioning the reinforcing ribs – can help to further reduce more of a component’s carbon footprint,” says Margraf.

Battery charger: reduced carbon footprint thanks to polyamide 6 instead of polyamide 66

The extent to which the carbon footprint can be reduced is demonstrated by the cover of an on-board battery charger installed in an all-electric compact vehicle made by a German car manufacturer. It consists of Durethan BKV50H3.0, which is heavily reinforced with 50% by weight short glass fibers. According to Margraf: “Compared to a component solution made from a polyamide 66 compound containing the same amount of fiberglass, the carbon footprint can be reduced by 36%. Using a BKV50 type with Eco fiberglass reinforcement could have potentially reduced the carbon footprint by up to 46%.

The carbon footprints of LANXESS polyamide 6 resin and glass fiber have been certified by an accredited certification body. The comparison with polyamide 66 resin is based on emission figures published by PlasticsEurope – the European association of plastics producers – in February 2014 in “Eco-profiles PA66”.

More detailed information on LANXESS Polyamide 6, PBT and Glass Fiber certified carbon footprints and HiAnt service offering can be found at https://lanxess.com/en/Products-and-Brands/ Focus-Topics/CO2-Footprint-Engineering-Plastics and www.hiant.lanxess.com.

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