ADDITIVES: Catalyst Acts As Compatibilizer For Dissimilar Polymers

Kenrich Petrochemical's titanium/mixed-metal catalyst masterbatch regenerates PCR to virgin-like properties and more.

Related Suppliers

A new catalyst masterbatch, launched at Fakuma 2014, acts as a compatibilizer between a wide spectrum of polymers, including polyolefins, PET, PVC and bioplastics like PLA and PHA. Ken-React KPR Rezyk-1240 Pellets and 1280 Powder from Kenrich Petrochemicals, Inc., Bayonne, N.J., is the result of combining the company’s single-site titanate catalyst, which is analogous to a titanocene, with a mixed-metal catalyst, which is analogous to a Z-N (Ziegler-Natta) catalyst to “give more bang for the buck,” according to company president Salvatore Monte.

In addition, the new catalyst has been shown to increase extrusion rates and lower cycle times in injection molding. The catalyst is said to regenerate post-consumer recycle (PCR) plastic mixtures (e.g., PP/PET/PE) to virgin-like properties. One example is the addition of 50% recycled PP and HDPE to make injection-molded parts that do not delaminate. Despite the fact that they are both olefins, typically, HDPE cannot accept more than 5% addition of PP without creating incompatibility issues.

The masterbatch can be used just like a color concentrate, but must be melt compounded at ~10% lower temperatures than normal to create reactive compounding shear because the catalyst reduces viscosity. The lower temperature is key in order to impart the optimal Work Energy (quantified as torque vs. time) at the interface of the dissimilar macromolecules to optimize the complete reaction of this 1.5-nm catalyst, Monte explains. Designed for compounders, meanwhile, the KPR Rezyl-1280 powder has twice the activity.