A few weeks ago, Polinox, the largest manufacturer of peroxides in Latin America, supported the organization of an event about Fast RTM in Brazil. Indicated for the production of composite parts consumed by automakers, the technology is an evolution of the traditional RTM process – in general, it combines high-pressure RTM with the compression system.
In Brazil, RTM holds a 12% share in the ranking of molding technologies, according to the latest survey of the Latin American Composite Materials Association (ALMACO). It may seem little, but it is the automated process most used in the country, ahead of filament winding (9%), continuous lamination (7%), infusion (6%), pultrusion (5%) and BMC/SMC (5%).
In terms of raw materials, just as resins and reinforcements proper for RTM must be specified, the situation is no different with peroxides. “In Brazil, there is still the paradigm that there is one peroxide for all processes. By adopting this behavior, the manufacturer of the part ends up not taking advantage of the particularities of each product,” said Sérgio Andrade, industrial manager of Polinox.
Andrade recommends molders to use an acetyl acetone (AAP) peroxide in the RTM process – in the case of Polinox, Brasnox® AAP. “AAP increases geltime, allowing the resin to be injected all over the mold surface. Then, once the resin has gelled, polymerization rapidly occurs, thus allowing for a quick mold release.”
According to Polinox’s industrial manager, another benefit from AAP is that it ensures a much faster mold release time compared to other peroxides. “This is essential in a medium-run technology such as RTM.” However, if the manufacturer wants to shorten the geltime of the resin, the best alternative is to resort to a blend. “We recommend blends of AAP with methyl ethyl ketone,” said Andrade. In the portfolio of Polinox, the products with this profile are Brasnox AAP 3070 and Brasnox AAP 5050.
Founded in 1960 and certified according to ISO 9001 and 14001 standards, Polinox currently operates an industrial complex in Itupeva (São Paulo) with a monthly production capacity of 360 tons of peroxides.