K 2022 Sustainable high-performance materials

Source: Lehvoss

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The top themes of K 2022 include circular economy, digitalization and climate protection. The Lehvoss Group will be represented its solutions for these trends offered by a total of five business units.

Additive manufactured fixture made of Luvocom 3F eco PET.
Additive manufactured fixture made of Luvocom 3F eco PET.
(Source: Lehvoss)

The Lehvoss Group will present the sustainability and performance of its high-performance materials at K 2022 as part of a wide-ranging exhibition program. In detail, this includes the following topics:

  • Sustainable materials from the Luvotech eco product line based on Lehvoss ecX technology
  • High-performance plastics as a metal alternative for the entire value chain in the field of bicycle components
  • Expansion of the Long Fiber Reinforced Thermoplastics portfolio in the Luvocom LFT product line
  • New high-performance masterbatches from the Luvobatch product line
  • SMC/BMC special products from the Composite Material Business Unit
  • Chemical and mineral specialties from the Luvomaxx business unit

The Lehvoss Group and its subsidiary WMK Plastics present sustainable materials from the Luvotech eco product line based on Lehvoss ecX technology. The materials in the Luvotech eco product line are based on raw materials from mechanical recycling and — as a further contribution to sustainability — are manufactured using 100 percent green electricity from a certified energy supplier.

The ecX technology (eco compounding eXperience) stands for know-how in the production of ecologically sustainable materials of the highest quality. This makes it possible to produce materials — from PC/ABS to PEEK-relevant applications — that have a significantly improved CO2 balance sheet and a reduced overall environmental impact.

Eco materials can be used across processing technologies

The group is meeting the growing demand for sustainable materials in 3D printing with the Luvocom 3F eco PET product line. The material consists of 90 percent recycled PET.

Luvocom 3F eco PET can be used in both the FFF (Fused Filament Fabrication) and FGF (Fused Granulate Fabrication) processes. Like all products from the Luvocom 3F product line, this material also impresses with its excellent processability and equally excellent product properties. The areas of application include the production of functional prototypes and series parts in numerous industries. In addition to mechanical and automotive engineering, these also include medical technology. Numerous other compounds are currently under development and will complete the product range in the short term.

Additive manufactured fixture made of Luvocom 3F eco PET.
Additive manufactured fixture made of Luvocom 3F eco PET.
(Source: Lehvoss)

The group presents a range of high-performance plastics as a metal alternative for the entire value chain in the field of bicycle components. These plastics include:

  • high-strength materials with glass fiber and carbon fiber reinforcement for structural and add-on parts,
  • ultralight construction materials and high-performance materials for consistent lightweight construction with maximum strength,
  • tribologically optimized materials for minimizing wear and friction or for dry running, and
  • technical recyclates to further reduce the environmental footprint.

All materials offer a metal alternative in terms of technical performance, component appearance and design freedom, as well as in terms of total cost and carbon footprint. They enable designers to exploit potentials - in terms of optimized component development, strength and weight - that were previously undiscovered or technologically unfeasible. This is made possible by technical and high-performance plastic compounds:

  • which, in terms of resistance and strength level, are equivalent to metals or — especially in comparison with light metal alloys — in some cases significantly superior, and
  • which are manufactured at various regional production sites in Europe, the USA and Asia and thus support or ensure parts production in the respective sales country through short distances.

Smartphone fixture made of Luvotech eco PA666-GF50-HS-BK
Smartphone fixture made of Luvotech eco PA666-GF50-HS-BK
(Source: Sebastian Kummer)

As part of a production demonstration at the trade show booth, the Group and Feschd, a manufacturer of cell phone holders for bicycles from Gießen, Germany, will present the production of a smartphone holder. The special feature of the holder, which is manufactured on the basis of the Lehvoss recycled material Luvotech eco PA666-GF50-HS-BK, is not only its high functionality but also its sustainability, its production location and the social commitment behind it:

As part of the research project “Extreme Lightweight Design through Holistic Engineering of 3D Skeleton Wrapping Technology” (Eleganz-3D), conducted jointly with the Fraunhofer Institute for Chemical Technology (ICT), the Group is presenting a pedal crank for bicycles whose additively manufactured core consists of Luvocom 3F PAHT CF 9742 BK. The pedal crank demonstrator illustrates the potential of 3DSW in the context of lightweight applications requiring complex interactions of tensile, compressive and torsional loads.

The bicycle accessories of the Solingen-based manufacturer Rixen&Kaul impress with a consistent sustainability concept: This is based on the one hand on the use of Luvotech eco materials — technical Lehvoss recycling materials with optimized CO2 balance — and on the other hand on the sourcing of materials from the production site, which is also located in Solingen.

Blobber saddle with components made from Luvosint and Luvotech eco.
Blobber saddle with components made from Luvosint and Luvotech eco.
(Source: Blobber)

The Blobber bike saddle with air cushioning

The completely in Austria produced, up to 1.2 bar inflatable bicycle saddle with air damping has a printed core made of Luvosint TPU. The saddle is manufactured on the basis of two production processes: In the first step, the insert, which acts as a damping element, is sintered; in the second, polyurethane molding technology is used

The strong expansion of the Luvocom LFT product portfolio once again raises the bar in terms of plastics performance. Both in structural components and in the area of metal replacement, the new LFT compounds are thus pushing forward into areas that were previously technologically unfeasible. The modifications presented at the trade show impress with their further optimized performance parameters, such as impact strength, colourability and surface properties. The trade show exhibits include:

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Additive manufactured fixture made of Luvocom 3F eco PET.
Additive manufactured fixture made of Luvocom 3F eco PET.
(Source: Lehvoss)

Aircraft refueling nozzle with optimized handle

The handle made of the mechanically highly stressable, impact-resistant material Luvocom LFT PA66-GF30 is based on a long-fiber-reinforced polyamide. In addition to its high impact strength, even at extremely low temperatures, the material is also characterized by its very good colourability, which makes a significant contribution to differentiation.

New high-performance additive masterbatches

The development of lightweight yet resistant plastics is an important topic for the future. After all, less weight means savings in energy, materials and transport costs. To achieve this goal, Luvobatch has developed physiologically safe, endothermic (azodicarbonamide (ADC)-free) blowing agent masterbatches for use in injection molding and extrusion. These masterbatches can also be used in food applications and achieve significant results in reducing weight and sink marks and optimizing processing parameters even at a low dosage — from 0.1 percent. In the automotive sector, for example, a weight reduction of 24 percent was achieved with a one percent masterbatch addition.

In addition, there are product innovations in the area of flame retardants, which feature more environmentally friendly halogen-free masterbatches based on nitrogen, phosphorus, mineral additives or intumescent systems. These are produced on various polymer carriers for the best possible compatibility with the customer's material. Possible applications range from film structures to cables and components with higher wall thicknesses. Another product innovation is Inovia's pure additive for halogen-free flame-retardant finishing of PMMA and PC, without the previously prevailing losses in transparency.