Posts Tagged ‘Nylon’

What Is thermoplastic polymers and in what ways are Nexam Chemical improving the properties of the materials? One methodology will be described in this blog post.

A multitude of our popular plastics are defined as thermoplastics which means that upon recycling , their molecular properties does not change as the plastic is melted and reused (according to definition and in theory). Examples are PE, PP, PTFE (Teflon), ABS and polyamide (nylon).

A very easily digested full pedagogic description is available here:

https://sciencing.com/thermoplastic-polymer-5552849.html

Another example of a thermoplastic is PET (polyethyleneterephtalate) which is used in composite sandwich constructions and light weight construction materials. The company Armacell is active in this business with sustainability in focus (recycling of PET bottles):

https://local.armacell.com/en/armaform-pet-foam-cores/

CESI has already highlighted that according to the Q2 Nexam Chemical interim report, Armacell will use Nexam proprietary technology in the next generation PET foam:

“The delivery agreement that we signed with Armacell last quarter is about to, with some delay, find its practical form. Armacell will use NEXAMITE® in its ArmaFORM® PET-foam to achieve increased efficiency” Source link. Statement found on page 2.

The explanation to the repeated CESI highlight is the following finding: A new Nexam patent application was published a few days ago (November 22, 2017). The described invention relates to a process for increasing the melt strength of a thermoplastic polyester and to mitigate degradation of the polyester during melting.

The common (?) degradation issues of PET is pedagogically described in this open access article by Venkatachalam et. al.:

“The main degradations that can occur include thermal degradation, oxidative degradation and hydrolytic degradation. Radiation induced or photo degradation leading to free radical reactions and enzymatic catalysed reactions leading to logical degradation are also possible. In addition to these there can be chemical degradation reaction of polyester initiated by specific chemicals like glycol, ammonia or amines or other such reagents. Besides these there can be weathering ageing which could be the combined effect of exposure to temperature, moisture, chemical, UV and visible light and other conditions such as exposure to grease, oil. Polyester can also undergo stress induced degradation reactions when subjected to mechanical stress. The degradation of polyester can lead to several changes in the articles made out of the polymer. These changes include discoloration, chain scissions resulting in reduced molecular weight, formation of acetaldehyde and cross-links or gel formation and fish-eye formation in films.
The thermal and thermo oxidative results in poor processibility and performance
characteristics in the products. Discoloration is due to the formation of various
chromophoric systems following prolonged thermal treatment at elevated temperatures.
This becomes a problem when the optical requirements of the polymer are very high, such as in packaging applications.”

Let´s look at some quotes from the following new Nexam patent application…

EP3246349 PROCESS FOR INCREASING THE MELT STRENGTH OF A THERMOPLASTIC POLYMER

Publication Date:22.11.2017

Applicant: Nexam Chemical AB

Source link here (most easily digested if downloaded)

“However, especially thermoplastic polyesters, but also to some extent aliphatic polyamides, suffer from having a narrow processing window, thereby typically requiring specialized processing equipment. This is related to the melt rheology of thermoplastic polyesters. Thermoplastic polyesters typically have low melt viscosity, low melt strength, and low melt elasticity.”

[CESI: see blue font below for “rheology” explanations]

“[0012] By using PETA, rather than pyromellitic dianhydride (PMDA) commonly used in the art, the melt strength of thermoplastic polyesters could be considerably increased. By use of the same combination, i.e. PET A and a bisoxazoline, also the melt strength of polyamides, e.g. aliphatic polyamides, and thermoplastic polyurethanes, could be improved.

[0013] Further and importantly, the rate of the thermomechanical degradation seen in melt mixing of thermoplastic polyesters was considerably decreased compared to PBO/PMDA-systems, as can be seen from Fig. 1. For applications with longer residence times, such as residence times exceeding 10 minutes, this is a clear advantage, as the thermomechanical degradation is quite rapid for PBO/PMDA-systems. A typical example of an application with longer residence time is extrusion foaming of PET. polyesters was considerably decreased compared to PBO/PMDA-systems, as can be seen from Fig. 1.

CESI:  Nexam specify a large number of polyester polymer substrates and additives:

“According to an embodiment, the thermoplastic polymer is thus a polyester. The polyester is typically an aliphatic polyester or a semi aromatic polyester. The polyester may be selected from the group consisting of polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polybutylene terephthalate (PBT), polytrimethylene terephthalate (PTT), 30 polyglycolic acid (PGA), polylactic acid (PLA), polycaprolactone (PCL), and polyethylene naphthale (PEN). Specifically, the polyester employed may be a semi aromatic polyester. Examples of aliphatic polyesters include polylactic acid (PLA), polyglycolic acid (PGA), polycaprolactone (PCL), polyethylene adipate (PEA), and polyhydroxyalkanoate (PHA), e.g. poly-3-hydroxyvalerate (PHV), poly-4-hydroxybutyrate (P4HB), and poly-3-hydroxy propionate (P3HP). Examples of semi aromatic polyesters include polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polyethylene naphthalate (PEN), polypropylene 35 terephthalate (PPT), polybutylene terephthalate (PBT), and polytrimethylene terephthalate (PTT). Further, the semiaromatic polyester may be a co-polymer of PET, PBT, or PEN.

Thus, also a nucleating agent, such as talc, kaolin, silica gel, orTi02, a flame retardant, such as a halogenated, charforming (like phosphorus-containing) or water-releasing compound, a plasticizer, a lubricant, such as an ester of a fatty acid, an impact modifier, insulation modifier, a pigment, a filler, an antioxidant, a UV-stabilizer and/or a color improver may be added to the thermoplastic polymer and melt mixed therewith.”

Fig 2 visualizes (see graph in link here) that…

At high frequencies> 100 rad/s (i.e. at high shear rate) the differences between the different formulations is relatively small, whereas at low frequencies <1 rad/s (i.e. at low shear rate) the complex viscosity of the PETA-PBO formulation is approximately at least one order of magnitude higher than the comparative examples. Further, the cross-over point, which was determined from the frequency sweep analysis, was significantly lower for Example 1 as compared to the Comparative Examples 1-4. Determination of cross-over point is a method used to evaluate the melt strength (ref J. Frankland, Plastics Technology Online 2013-05-28). Thus, the  melt strength of the PETA-PBO formulation is superior compared to that of the comparative examples. Further, this confirms that pressure in the extruder may be used as a semi-quantitative measure of the melt strength, as the shear rate in the current experiments is about 6 rad/s in the extruder

The claim comprehends a number of polymides: PA6, PA 11, PA 12, PA46, PA41 0, 50 PA66, PA61 0, PA612, PA 1010, PA 1012, and PA 1212.

[CESI: Again, a polyamide is equivalent to nylon: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nylon]

And interestingly, the following article are stated in the final section of the patent application as a “document considered to be relevant”:

https://www.ptonline.com/articles/additives-multi-purpose-modifiers-pump-up-properties-of-virgin-recycled-plastics

Furthermore, the Armacell patent EP 2 163 577 A1 is exemplified.

In the ptonline link attached above,  a very interesting picture demonstrating the (potential) impact of Nexam technology is found (Nexam treated polymer vs untreated)

About Rheology- the science of deformation and flow of materials

Explanation of the unit rad/s found in the Nexam Chemical melt strength comparison plot:

  • Wikipedia (“shear rate unit” search): The SI unitof measurement for shear rate is s−1, expressed as “reciprocal seconds” or “inverse seconds
  • Wikipedia (“rad/s” search): In physics, the angular velocity of an object is the rate of change of its angular displacementwith respect to time. The SI unit of angular velocity is radians per second.

CESI Conclusion: It´s simply the frequency/velocity of the flow expressed in a more complicated way. Thus, it should directly correlate to the speed of the extrusion (the continuous manufacturing of plastics)

The link below describes fundamentals of Rheology in a pedagogic way: http://www.polydynamics.com/Rheology.pdf

CESI Learnings:

  • The higher the shear rate, the easier it is to force polymers to flow through dies and process equipment.”
  • When a force is acting tangentially on a surface, the corresponding stress is referred to as shear stress. Normal stress (=normal pressure) = when a force is perpendicular to a surface
  • Viscosity = Shear stress / shear rate (= a higher shear rate equals a lower viscosity)
  • Shear rate = Velocity / h (hight in the case of flow through 2 planes)
  • With careful rheological measurements, it is possible to determine whether, or under what conditions, a material will be processable. Blend ratios, or additive quantities necessary to facilitate processing can be determined. Many problems can be avoided by a thorough rheological characterization, before the material is introduced into the extruder hopper
  • With careful rheological measurements, it is possible to determine whether, or under what conditions, a material will be processable. Blend ratios, or additive quantities necessary to facilitate processing can be determined. Many problems can be avoided by a thorough rheological characterization, before the material is introduced into the extruder hopper

CESI rheology conclusion: So, rheology tells us that increased velocity (flow speed) will generally be beneficial for polymer processing up to the point shark skin (surface mattness) and melt fractures occurs as described in the article above.

In this patent application, Nexam demonstrate how melt strength can dramatically be increased even during slower speed (frequences,velocities, rad/s) and slow speed seems crucial for PET foam production and most importantly: The improvement is substantial – a full magnitude at < 1 rad/s (see page 14 here). The X axis unit “rad/s” was explained above (= frequency/ velocity/speed of the extrusion)

Thus, it seems that Nexam has solved/improved the melt strength in the “difficult slow extrusion PET foam case” by adding to Nexam product molecules that in fact result in a synergy effect As the key is to keep a high melt strength for an extended period of time as described here in the Nexam patent application quote:

[0058] Whereas system comprising PMDA or combinations of PMDA and PBO also are effective in reacting with PET to increase the melt strength (measured as increased pressured in the extruder), these systems are prone to quite rapidly cause degradation. For longer residence time, such as the ones typically used in e.g. foaming application, the final melt strength is thus significantly lower (cf. Fig. 1 and Table 4). However, as can be seen from Fig. 1 and Table 4, systems comprising combinations of PETA and PBO, may provide increased melt strength also for longer residence times as the melt strength declines far less rapidly. As can be seen in Fig. 1 for the PMDA, PMDA+PBO and PBO formulations, 20 the pressure reaches its maximum value in < 10 minutes and after that, it decreases with increasing time. For the PETA+PBO, on the other hand, the maximum pressure is obtained after> 10 minutes. Also, for the PETA+PBO formulation the pressure at the end of the experiment is significantly higher than for the comparative examples

The opposite easy case is the following scenario described at page 3 here: http://www.polydynamics.com/Rheology.pdf

“One remarkable property of polymeric liquids is their shear-thinning behavior (also known as pseudo-plastic behavior). If we increase the rate of shearing (i.e., extrude faster through a die), the viscosity becomes smaller [….] This reduction of viscosity is due to molecular alignments and disentanglements of the long polymer chains. As one author said in a recent article: “polymers love shear.” The higher the shear rate, the easier it is to force polymers to flow through dies and process equipment.”

Best regards, CESI

(Not skilled in the art of polymer chemistry but with an ambition to continuously gain learnings…)

The author, Cutting Edge Science Invest, is a Nexam Chemical share holder. Cutting Edge Science Invest can not guarantee, or take into  accountability, the content of truth and accuracy of the information in this article/post.Thus, Cutting Edge Science Invest requires that a possible reader gather complimentary information if any type of investment in the company described above is considered. Cutting Edge Science Invest provides personally biased information and at best also “general information and opinions”. The article/post does not contain professional investment advice. 

This might be one of the most exiting CESI finding published. Why? In December 17, 2014, the market expectations and the Nexam share price instantly plunged after the first key sentence of this specific Nexam press release:

“Nexam Chemical and BASF have jointly decided not to extend the exclusivity agreement regarding polyamide 66 compounds containing Nexam Chemical´s crosslinker, which was signed between the parties in February 2014, and which ends during the second quarter of 2015. The reason for this decision is that Nexam would like to include polyamide 66 in the projects it has with other partners in the polyamide area.

The collaboration will however continue between the parties and test material based on BASF’s polyamide 66 and Nexam Chemical’s additives will be tested in components by e.g. the automotive industry during spring 2015.

For more information, please contact:
Lennart Holm, Chairman of the Board: +46 (0)706 30 8562″

Despite additional information regarding continued activities, the market obviously concluded that minimal true value remained in the Nexam-BASF collaboration and since the market has not found incentives to update this opinion. Updates indicating continued activities have been absent both from external news agents, inofficial content from independent forums as well as from Nexam and BASF.

In the light of this introduction, the new BASF patent publication (described below) resulted in an increased CESI pulse and a few questions after yet another thorough scan of the December 17, 2014 press release:

“The reason for this decision is that Nexam would like to include polyamide 66 in the projects it has with other partners in the polyamide area. [..] The collaboration will however continue between the parties and test material based on BASF’s polyamide 66 and Nexam Chemical’s additives will be tested in components by e.g. the automotive industry during spring 2015.”

To the best of CESI´s knowledge, no specific information is available for outsiders regarding status in Nexam projects with other partners. However, attached below is a very recent indication that BASF is progressing well within polyamide 6 and 66 and – most importantly for the Nexam share holder – BASF is adding specific Nexam cross-linkers…

Pub. No.: WO/2015/140016 International Application No.: PCT/EP2015/055018

Original Source Link (click here)

Title: CROSS-LINKED POLYAMIDES

Publication Date: 24.09.2015 

International Filing Date: 11.03.2015 (3 months after termination of the exclusivity agreement!)

In this patent, BASF claims a thermoplastic molding material containing a polyamide + glass fibers + Nexam cross-linkers + miscellaneous additives and/or fillers. To CESI´s excitement, the Nexam cross-linkers has a central role in this patent and in addition BASF states that these cross-linkers are available from Nexam (!)

CESI Diclaimer: The patent quotes attached below was subject to automated translation by the web browser and this resulted in a few grammatical errors below. To conserve the true message and accuracy, CESI decided not to edit these grammatical errors.

“It has now been found that the profile of properties of glass fiber reinforced PA can be significantly improved by the addition, inter alia ethynylmodifizierten Phthalsäureanhydri-to or imides. The additives are this compounded at very low temperatures in the polyamide, which the amino end groups of the polymer “endcap-pen”, a cross-linking but not / or will take place in the melt in just such a small scale, so that the polymer can still be processed. The triple bonds of the additives are then thermally activated in a further step, for example by introducing high shear forces during injection molding or by annealing below the melting point of the polymer. The thus obtained crosslinked polyamides have an improved property profile. in- cluding a lower water absorption, higher heat resistance and improved creep. is also reduced by the lower water absorption of the deterioration of the mechanical properties in the conditioned state.”

[…]

“Process for the preparation of the unsaturated compounds C) are known from the EP-A 2 444 387, WO 2010/36175, WO 2010/36170 and WO 2012/52550. Such compounds are available as Nexamite ® from Nexam Chem., SE commercially.”

Very particular preference is given in the novel thermoplastic molding compositions of polyamides, which are selected from the group consisting of Polyhexamethylenadipin acid amide (nylon 66, polyamide 66), a mixture of polyamides with a polyamide 66 component of at least 80 wt .-% or a copolyamide whose blocks at least 80 wt .-% of adipic acid and hexamethylenediamine are derivable, polycaprolactam (nylon-6, nylon 6), or mixtures thereof.”

Component C1 equals NEXAMITE®A32 (Nexam Chem.) (4- (Methylethynyl) Phthalic Anhydride (CAS: 1240685-26-0)

Component C2 equals NEXAMITE®A33 (Nexam Chem.) (Hexamethylene-1, 6-di- (4-methylethynyl) phthalimide)

The mechanical properties were determined in dry and conditioned state.

[…]

Component H) thermoplastic molding compositions of the invention may comprise the usual processing aids, such as stabilizers, antioxidants, heat stabilizers and UV stabilizers, lubricants and release agents, colorants such as dyes and pigments, nucleating agents, plasticizers, and so forth.

Examples of antioxidants and heat stabilizers are hindered Phos-phite and amines (eg TAD), hydroquinones, aromatic secondary amines, such as diphenylamines, various substituted representatives of these groups and mixtures thereof, in concentrations up to 1 wt .-%, based on the weight of called thermoplastic molding compositions.

UV stabilizers, which are generally present in amounts up to 2 wt .-%, based on the molding composition, are various substituted resorcinols, salicylates, Benzotriazo-le and benzophenones.

Inorganic pigments, such as titanium dioxide, ultramarine blue, iron oxide and carbon black, and organic pigments such as phthalocyanines, quinacridones, perylenes, and dyes such as anthraquinones, are added as colorants.

Flame retardants phosphorus, P- and N-containing compounds may be mentioned.

As nucleating agent sodium phenyl, alumina, silica, and preferably talc may be used.

The thermoplastic molding compositions according to the invention can be prepared according to known Ver-go, by mixing the starting components in conventional mixing apparatus, such as screw extruders, Brabender mixers or Banbury mixers, and then extruding them. After extrusion, the extrudate can be cooled and comminuted. It can also be individual components are premixed and then the remaining starting materials and / or likewise mixed. The mixing temperatures are generally from 230 to 320 ° C.

The molding compositions and moldings of the invention are distinguished by a good heat resistance, chemical resistance, low water absorption, better mechanical properties in the conditioned state, scratch resistance, dimensional stability and creep.

[…]

“The molding compositions are suitable for the production of moldings of any type, especially in the automotive sector.

Some examples are mentioned: cylinder head covers, motorcycle covers, intake manifolds on, intercooler end caps, connectors, gears, impellers, cooling water tanks.

In the E / E department can with improved-flow polyamides are plugs, plug components, plug connectors, membrane switches, PCB assemblies, microelectronic components, coils, I / O connectors, connectors for printed circuit boards (PCB), connector for flexible circuit boards (FPC) connectors for flexible integrated circuits (FFC), high-speed connectors, terminal blocks, connector, Connectors, wiring harness components, cable mounts, cable mount components, three-dimensional molded interconnect devices, electrical connectors, mechatronic components.

In the car-interior is a use for dashboards, steering column switches, seat components, headrests, center consoles, gearbox components, and door modules, and possible automobile exterior door handles, exterior mirror components, windshield wiper components, windshield wiper protective housings, grille, roof rails, sunroof frames, engine covers, cylinder head covers, intake manifolds (in particular intake manifold), windshield wipers, and exterior bodywork parts.

For the kitchen and household sector, the use of improved-flow polyamides for the production of components for kitchen equipment, eg fryers, smoothing irons, buttons, and applications in the garden and leisure sector, for example components for irrigation systems or even-tengeräte and door handles is possible.”

These stated BASF applications also aligns well with the application stated in the original Nexam Chemical press release (Nexam Chemical source link):

“Nexam signs co-operation agreement with BASF

2011-11-23

Nexam Chemical and BASF have signed an exclusive co-operation agreement regarding development and commercialization of crosslinked PA 66 (nylon 66).

The goal is to develop a PA 66, containing Nexam’s crosslinkers, which can be processed as usual to then be crosslinked using heat activation, and that the crosslinked material gets properties that are substantially better than current PA 66 based materials.

Initial application segments consist, among other things, of the automotive, electrical and electronics industry.

For more information, please contact:

Lennart Holm, Chairman of the Board: +46 (0)706 30 8562
Per Palmqvist Morin, CEO, +46 (0)706 55 55 82″

BASF patent WO/2015/140016 Summary (CESI)

  • Roughly 10 % less water content using a formulation containing Nexam cross-linker(s).
  • Roughly 20 % stiffer material (a +20 % E module number is stated). Slightly different results at different temperature. Higher stiffness at all temperatures was obtained using a formulation containing Nexam cross-linker(s).
  • Roughly 15 % better heat resistance using a formulation containing Nexam cross-linker(s)
  • Higher tensile strength (+10 %)
  • DRAMATICALLY higher gel content (BASF states higher is better): 400% after injection in the comparison between formulation 1V and formulation 2. Formulation 2 contains NEXAMITE®A32 and NEXAMITE®A33. The gel content after heating at 220 ° C is roughly 50% for formulation 2 compared to < 5% for formulation 1V.

Conclusion (CESI)

CESI does not interpret this patent as a BASF strategy to actively delay or block Nexam cross-linkers from the market. Why? All stated result data is superior to “Nexam free polyamide”. BASF should have strong incentives to capitalize on this formulation / innovation. In fact, the claimed applications are aligned well with the previous statements (Nexam:The collaboration will however continue between the parties and test material based on BASF’s polyamide 66 and Nexam Chemical’s additives will be tested in components by e.g. the automotive industry during spring 2015″). Presumably, the patent filing date (Mars 11, 2015) might indicate that these tests were successful and that the collaboration is in fact still an active collaboration. In addition, BASF clearly states that the cross-linkers are Nexam derivatives AND also states that they are commercially available from Nexam. Therefore, CESI does not believe that BASF plans to produce these cross-linkers in-house. 

So what did happen back in December 2014?

Due to the complexity of the formulations stated in this patent (i. d. the large number of “ingredients”), CESI is relatively convinced that the earlier BASF exclusivity agreement was in fact terminated by Nexam (as officially and originally stated) primarily due to delays in the formulation work performed at BASF. Logically, BASF had no ambitions to buy large volumes of cross-linkers without a confirmed successful formulation. Speculatively (with this patent as the guide), it seems like BASF did not solve prior formulation issues until in the beginning of 2015. Therefore, CESI also believes that only the exclusivity agreement was terminated (not the collaboration). Furthermore, Nexam´s input in terms of “hands on late stage formulation optimization” has likely been limited since (compared to 2014 when CESI got the impression that Nexam and BASF worked next to each other on a daily basis). In conclusion, this has potentially freed up resources and therefore Nexam logically and easily could take the strategic and intelligent decision to (temporarily?) exclude nylons as a focus area. Another key game stopper for top prioritization of polyamides could be “unknown time to market” for cross-linked BASF Nylons (containing Nexam cross-linkers). CESI believes that a similar strategy will be applied for other current polyamide collaboration partners with a small twist :This time, Nexam aims to charge for consulting. Finally, CESI speculatively predicts a future BASF market launch containing Nexam cross-linkers and that Nexam ultimately will capitalize on future BASF polyamides (nylons) after all. CESI embraces this potential BASF counter-strike within yet another gigantic polymer market segment. 

Note: Slightly more reading in SwedishClick here if of interest (a Dec, 2014 email from L. Holm to Six News, source: Aktiespararna):

Best regards, C.E.S.I.

The author, Cutting Edge Science Invest, is a Nexam Chemical share holder. Cutting Edge Science Invest can not guarantee, or take into accountability, the content of truth and accuracy of the information in this article/post.Thus, Cutting Edge Science Invest requires that a possible reader gather complimentary information if any type of investment in the company described above is considered. Cutting Edge Science Invest provides personally biased information and at best also “general information and opinions”. The article/post does not contain professional investment advice. 

Herein, selected quotes are attached from US20140303328, CROSS-LINKER, Nexam Chemical, Publication Date:09.10.2014

For reasons of clarity, bulletpoints, bold text and blue font has occasionally been added to the original patent quote(s) below by CESI.

“Thermoplastic aliphatic polyamides are often referred to as Nylon. Nylons are typically condensation copolymers formed by reacting a diamine and a dicarboxylic acid or ring-opening polymers formed by polymerization of lactames, such as aminocaproic acid. One of the most common variants is nylon 66, also known as PA 66, which name refers to the fact that the diamine (hexamethylene diamine) and the diacid (adipic acid) each donate 6 carbons to the polymer chain.

Nylon was developed as a synthetic replacement for silk and substituted for it in many different products, such as parachutes, after silk became scarce during World War II. Nylon fibers are today used in many applications, including fabrics, carpets, musical strings, and rope. Solid or reinforced nylon (engineering polymer) is used for mechanical parts such as machine parts, gears, containers, tubes, primary and secondary design elements and other low- to medium-stress components previously cast in metal. Engineering-grade nylon is processed by extrusion, casting, and/or injection molding.

In order to improve the mechanical strength, aromatic polyamides, such as aramid, have been developed. Furthermore, aromatic polyamides are less prone to absorb water than aliphatic polyamides. Absorption of water will affect the mechanical strength negatively. However, the processability of aromatic polyamides is inferior to one of aliphatic polyamides. Further, aromatic polyamides are more brittle and less resistance to chemical solvents compared to aliphatic polyamides. It would thus be desirable to be able to use aliphatic polyamides in applications wherein aromatic polyamides typically are used.

  • There have been attempts in the art to improve the mechanical strength of the polyimides, which are related to aromatic polyamides. U.S. Pat. No. 5,493,002 discloses oligoimides endcapped with PEPA (Phenylethynyl phtalic anhydride). The PEPA endcapped oligoimides are cured, i.e. cross-linked, at about 400° C. Similarly, U.S. Pat. No. 5,066,771 discloses use of EPA (ethynyl phtalic anhydride) as an endcapper for oligoimide. The disclosed EPA endcapped oligoimides was cured, i.e. cross-linked, in a step wise manner including heating at 200° C. for 4 hours, at 250° C. for 2 hours, at 290° C. for 1 hour and lastly at 320° C. for 6 hours.
  • Further, there have been attempts in the art to improve the mechanical strength of the aromatic polyamides. EP 1 988 114 discloses wholly aromatic polyetheramides endcapped with PEPA. Wholly aromatic polyamides are thermo stable and withstands the heat required to cure the cross-linkable end-capper PEPA. However, as well known within the art, aliphatic polyamides, such as various types of nylon, are less thermo stable and would degrade at temperatures typically used to cross-link PEPA. Thus, cross-linking of PEPA in polyamides would require catalysis or long term cross-linking at lower temperatures. Accordingly, PEPA has not find use as cross-linkable end-capper for aliphatic polyamides. As an alternative to PEPA, also ethynyl phtalic anhydride (EPA) has been used as cross-linker in polyimides (cf. Hergenrother, P. M., “Acetylene-terminated Imide Oligomers and Polymers Therefrom”, Polymer Preprints, Am. Chem. Soc., Vol. 21 (1), p. 81-83, 1980).
  • Although polyimides comprising EPA may be cross-linked at a lower temperature, i.e. at about 250° C., it suffers from other drawbacks. The exchange of the phenyl ethynyl group to an ethynyl group implies that other reaction pathways than the desired curing mechanism, such as chain extension, are favored. As a consequence, EPA has not found any wide use as a replacement to PEPA as a low temperature curing end-capper. Further, the manufacture of EPA requires protective group chemistry hampering its commercial potential.
  • Neither EPA is suitable as end-capper for polyamides. In addition to the drawback mentioned above, cross-linking of EPA will be initiated at temperature below the normal processing temperature, typically 290 to 310° C., of nylon 66, thus limiting its possible use as a cross-linker for nylon 66 end-capped with EPA would, at least to certain extent, cross-link during processing.
  • Polyamic acids, and their corresponding polyimides, endcapped with PEPA or EPA have been suggested for use in various applications in the art. As an example, JP 2010186134 discloses a photosensitive resin containing an optical base generator (A) and polyamic acid (B), wherein the polyamic acid (B) may have terminal polymerizable group(s). The terminal polymerizable groups are selected from polymerizable groups known in the art, such as anilines or dianhydrides comprising carbon-carbon double or triple bonds. Specifically disclosed examples of polymerizable end-cappers include maleic anhydride, 4-aminocinnamic acid, 4-ethynylaniline, 3a,4,7,7a-tetrahydroisobenzofuran-1,3-dione, 3a,4,7,7a-tetrahydro-4,7-methanoisobenzofuran-1,3-dione, 3a,4,7,7a-tetrahydro-4,7-epoxyisobenzofuran-1,3-dione, EPA and PEPA.
  • According to Wollf et al (cf. Synthesis, 2007 (5), 761-765) N-phenylphthalimides with carbon substituents in the 3-position, such as (4-(1-octyn-1-yl)-2-phenyl-1H-Isoindole-1,3(2H)-dione, 4-(1-hexyn-1-yl)-2-phenyl-1H-Isoindole-1,3(2H)-dione, and 4-(3,3-dimethyl-1-butyn-1-yl)-2-phenyl-1H-Isoindole-1,3(2H)-dione, are accessible by Sonogashira coupling reaction of the corresponding bromo derivatives. 3-alkyl substituted N-phenylphthalimides may be used as synthetic intermediates for the production of pre-organized hydrogen bonding donors for the synthesis of supramolecular affinity molecules.
  • U.S. Pat. No. 6,344,523 addresses the disadvantageous of the too high curing temperature of PEPA discussed above and discloses that use of sulfur or organic sulfur derivatives as curing promoters may lower the curing temperature of phenylethynyl terminated imide oligomers. However, the introduction of such promotors suffers from other disadvantages. In particular the curing results in chain extension rather than cross-linking as two ethynyl groups react along with one sulfur radical ultimately forming a thiophene structure.

Thus, there is need within the art for an alternative cross-linking monomer, overcoming the above-mentioned deficiencies, to be used as cross-linking monomer for aliphatic polyamides, such as PA66. 

CESI: Now, in this patent, Nexam has revealed that polyamides comprising a residue endcapped with two new formulas (I and II, see patent for full structural formula) may be cross-linked at a slightly lower temperature than polyamides comprising a residue of PEPA, i.e. at about 310° C.

“This temperature is high enough to allow normal processing of an aliphatic oligo- or polyamide, such as PA66, comprising a residue of a compound according to formula (I) or (II), without initiating curing, i.e. cross-linking, to any substantial extent. However, an aliphatic oligo- or polyamide comprising a residue of a compound according to formula (I) or (II) may, in contrast to an oligo- or polyamide comprising a residue of PEPA, be cured, i.e. cross-linked, without any significant thermo degradation of the oligo- or polyamide.

Thus, an embodiment of the present invention relates to a compound according to formula (I) or (II) as disclosed herein

Compounds according to formula (I) or (II) are suitable as end-cappers for oligomers and polymers comprising functional group(s) which may react with carboxylic anhydrides, such as compounds according to formula (II), or carboxylic acids or derivatives thereof, such as compounds according to formula (I). Such functional group(s) may be selected from group consisting of primary amino groups, hydroxy groups and epoxy groups.

[…]

Common examples of oligo- and polyamides, which may be end-capped or chain elongated with compounds according to formula (I) or (II), comprises Nylon 6, 66, 46, 69, 610, 612, 11, 12, 6T, 6I, 6DT, or mixtures thereof.

[…]

Further, the oligo- and polyamide, which may be end-capped or chain elongated with compounds according to formula (I) or (II) may be a semiaromatic oligo- or polyamide, such as PA6I.

[…]

As known to the skilled artisan, polyamides are hard to dissolve. Thus, although possible, it may be disadvantageous to introduce a compound according to formula (I) or (II) via a chemical reaction in solution. Further, modification of polymers in solution is general avoided as far as possible as it introduces additional steps into a production process dissolution and evaporation.

One option to introduce a compound according to formula (I) or (II) into oligo- and polyamide is to have them present as an additional constituent during the polymerization. However, although compounds according to formula (I) or (II) may act as chain extenders, the degree of polymerization would anyhow most likely be negatively affected. Further, the very long polymerization reaction times tend to decrease the yield of the cross-linker incorporated due to degradation.

However, it has unexpectedly been found that compounds according to formula (I) or (II), and especially compounds according to formula (II), wherein “X” is “O” (oxygen), may be introduced into polyamides by melt modification, i.e. be mixing compounds according to formula (I) or (II) into melted polyamides. Although, melt modification of polyamide to blend fillers, pigments, external flame retardant, stabilizers, plasticizer into the polyamide is known within the art, it is unexpected that compounds according to formula (I) or (II) may be effectively introduced into polyamides without degrading the polymer or the compound it self.

[…]

Furthermore, not only oligo- or polyamides may be end-capped via melt mixing with a cross-linkable aromatic carboxylic acid anhydride comprising a carbon-carbon triple bond. Also other polymers, comprising functional group(s) which may react with carboxylic anhydrides, which polymers may be melted at a lower temperature than the temperature at which cross-linking is initiated, may be end-capped via melt mixing. Such functional group(s) may be selected from group consisting of primary amino groups, hydroxy groups and epoxy groups. As an example, also epoxides and polyesters may be end-capped via melt mixing.

Common examples of oligo- and polyesters, which may end-capped or chain extended with compounds according to formula (I) or (II), comprises poly(ethylene terephthalate) (PET), poly(ethylene naphthalate) (PEN), poly(propylene terephthalate) (PPT) and poly(butylene terephthalate) (PBT).

[…]

As well known in the art, asymmetric aromatic diamines and dianhydrides may be used to prepare polyimides with a bent and rotationally hindered structure resulting in high Tg but also in improved processability and high melt fluidity along with and solubility of the resin in organic solvent. Symmetric aromatic dianhydrides as well asymmetric aromatic dianhydrides are equally possible.”

[CESI believes the Jayhawk Dianhydrides (such as a-BTDA) by Evonik could be defined as bent and rotationally hindered structures. These structures was discussed in the joint Nexam Evonik webinar.

More information from Evonik is available here:

http://composites.evonik.com/product/composites/en/products-services/matrix-systems/thermosets/Specialty%20anhydrides/Pages/default.aspx 

Ok, that was just an observation. Now, back to the main Nexam patent quote:]

“Another embodiment relates to an article comprising an oligomer or polymer comprising a residue according to formula (III) or (IV). Optionally, the oligomer or the polymer in the article has been cross-linked by heating it. Typically examples of articles comprising such oligomers or polymers include specialty organic fibers, such as meta- and para-Aramids, Polybenzimidazole (PBI), Polyethylene, Polyimide, Polyamideimide (PAI), Liquid Crystal Polymer Fibers.

Another embodiment relates to an article comprising an oligomer or polymer comprising a residue according to formula (III) or (IV). Optionally, the oligomer or the polymer in the article has been cross-linked by heating it.

Typically examples of articles comprising an oligo- or polyimide comprising a residue according to formula (III) or (IV), include flexible films for electronics, wire isolation, wire coatings, wire enamels, ink, and load-bearing structural components.

Typically examples of articles comprising an oligo- or polyamide comprising a residue according to formula (III) or (IV), include synthetic fibers, automotive parts, industrial machinery, electronics, films, wires, cables, tubing, pipes and stock shapes.

Typically examples of articles comprising a oligo- or polyester comprising a residue according to formula (III) or (IV), include synthetic fibers and containers, such bottles for beverages.

Similar to PEPA and EPA, also compounds according to formula (I) or (II), as well as compounds comprising a residue of such a compound, may cross-linked by heating them. Without being bound to any theory, it is believed that, upon heating of mixtures of compounds comprising ethynyl moieties, these moieties will eventually start to react. Reaction of two ethynyl moieties of separate molecules will provide a chain extended product, while reaction of three ethynyl moieties of separate molecules is thought to provide a benzene moiety with three “arms”. Subsequently, two or three ethynyl moieties present on such “arms” may react to form a cross-linked product. “

[CESI: This was the graphical visualization produced by CESI and subsequently used in the original Nexam blog post, click picture for enlargement and a higher quality visualization:

CYCLOTRIpng240SUN final

In this graphical visualization in total 6 arms of a benzene ring were depicted of which 3 arms corresponded to polymer arms. This should also be correct and CESI believes Nexam´s definition of arms in fact is corresponding to the (two or) three polymer arms, not the total amount of arms (the additional three “passive” arms carrying the small melting point regulator backpack)]

Ok, back to the patent quote:]

“Chain extension, but especially cross-linking, will improve the properties of an oligo- or polymer comprising ethynyl moieties, as has been shown in the art. Heat initiated chain extension, but especially cross-linking, of oligo- or polymers comprising ethynyl moieties is often referred to as curing.

The curing of compounds, such as oligo- or polyamide, comprising a residue according to formula (III) or (IV), and compositions or articles comprising an oligo- or polyamide comprising a residue according to formula (III) or (IV), may be accomplished by heating.

Such heating may be performed in an isothermal staging process. As an example, such an isothermal staging process may start by heating the material to be cured to 250° C. to 350° C., such as at about 280° C., for some time, typically 1 to 2 hours. However, also less time, such as less than 1 hour, or less than 30 minutes, may be used. Further, also longer times, such as up to 10 hours may be used. Subsequently, the temperature may be increased in steps. Each step may correspond to an increase of the temperature of 5° C. to 25° C. Further, each step may have a duration of 30 minutes to 10 hours, such as 1 to 2 hours. The last step may be curing at a temperature of 300 to 350° C., such as at about 350° C.

While temperatures exceeding 350° C. should be avoided for longer periods of time, curing at temperatures may be tolerated for short periods of time, such as less than 1 minute. Especially, polymer films may be cured at temperatures exceeding 350° C. for short periods of time.

[CESI: Finally, below is described the preparation of a selection of important polymers. This final quote was also obtained from the Nexam patent application US20140303328]

“The dissertation thesis “Synthesis and characterization of thermosetting polyimide oligomers for microelectronics packaging” by Debra Lynn Dunson, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, from 2000, provides information relating to the preparation of PEPA end-capped oligo- and polyimides. Similar procedures may be employed to prepare oligo- and polyimides comprising residues of compounds according to formula (I) or (II) as disclosed herein. Thus, the dissertation thesis “Synthesis and characterization of thermosetting polyimide oligomers for microelectronics packaging” by Debra Lynn Dunson, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University,from 2000 is incorporated herein by reference. As well known to the skilled artisan, various polyamides and polyesters may be obtained as disclosed herein below.

  • In preparing Nylon 66, Adipic acid (derived from cyclohexane) and hexa-methylene-diamine (most commonly derived from butadiene or acrylonitrile) are prereacted to form nylon salt that is particularly well suited to purification. Subsequently, the purified nylon salt is heated and, as water is removed, the polycondensation proceeds, current production units operate both continuously and by batch procedures.
  • In preparing Nylon 6, Caprolactam (derived from cyclohexane or phenol) is reacted in the molten state with controlled amounts of water to obtain intermediate epsilon-aminocaproic acid, which readily condenses to the corresponding polyamide 6 as water is removed under controlled conditions of temperature and pressure.
  • Nylon 46 resin is produced by reacting 1,4-diaminobutane with adipic acid. 1,4-Diaminobutane is derived by reacting acrylonitrile with hydrogen cyanide and subsequent reduction of the intermediate.
  • Nylon 69 resins are produced (via an intermediate) from hexamethylene diamine and azelaic acid. Azelaic acid is typically derived from tallow (via oleic acid).
  • Nylon 610 resins are produced (via an intermediate) from hexamethylene diamine and sebacic acid. Sebacic acid is usually derived from castor oil.
  • Nylon 612 resins are produced (via an intermediate) from hexa-methylene-diamine and dodecanedioic acid (DDDA), which is most often derived (via cyclododecane) from butadiene.
    Copolymer 6/12 resins are prepared from DDDA, caprolactam, hexa methylene diamine, adipic acid and/or other materials.
  • Nylon 11 resins are obtained from the self-condensation of 11-amino-undecanoic acid, which is typically derived from castor oil.
  • Nylon 12 resins are obtained from laurolactam in much the same manner in which nylon 6 is obtained from caprolactam. Laurolactam is usually derived (via cyclododecane) from butadiene.
  • PPA (polyphthalamide) is a copolymer made from terephthalic, isophthalic, and adipic acids and hexa-methylene-diamine.

[…]

  • Polybutylene terephthalate (PBT) resin is produced by the polycondensation of approximately equal molar proportions of 1,4-butanediol and dimethyl terephthalate (DMT). The first step in the reaction is transesterification, in which 1,4-butanediol replaces the methyl groups in the DMT molecule to form bis-(4-hydroxybutyl)-terephthalate (BHBT) and methyl alcohol, as shown below. The liberated methyl alcohol is removed from the reaction system to drive the exchange to near completion. PBT is produced by polycondensation of BHBT usually in the presence of a catalyst (commonly based on titanium) under reduced pressure at 240-260° C. As polycondensation occurs, 1,4-butanediol is produced and is removed from the polycondensation reaction as a vapor.
  • Virgin Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) polymer is produced by polycondensation of ethylene glycol with either dimethyl terephthalate (DMT) or terephthalic acid (TPA) via intermediate bis-(2-hydroxyethyl)-terephthalate (BHET).

Source link: The full patent is available here

Best regards, C.E.S.I.

The author, Cutting Edge Science Invest, is a Nexam Chemical share holder. Cutting Edge Science Invest can not guarantee, or take into  accountability, the content of truth and accuracy of the information in this article/post.Thus, Cutting Edge Science Invest requires that a possible reader gather complimentary information if any type of investment in the company described above is considered. Cutting Edge Science Invest provides personally biased information and at best also “general information and opinions”. The article/post does not contain professional investment advice. 

The scientific key to the expected near future Nexam Chemical commercial success has not yet been highlighted by analysts. Tentatively, due to a lack of scientific understanding. C.E.S.I. hopes this chemical analysis of the Nexam linker central scaffold also will enlight “non-chemist”. But first, a few quotes and some financial aspects from the recent Nexam interim report (Q2, 2014):

http://www.nexamchemical.com/Documents/Interim%20Reports/Nexam_ENG_Q2_2014_20140821_OK.pdf

Nexam Chemical 

“Nexam Chemical develops technology and products that make it possible to significantly improve the properties and performance of most types of plastics in a cost-effective manner and with the same production technology intact. The properties that are improved include temperature resistance and service life. The property improvements that can be achieved by using Nexam Chemical’s technology make it possible to replace metals and other heavier and more expensive materials with plastics in a number of different applications. The company was founded in July 2009 after a management buy-out of a crosslinker project from the Perstorp Group. By then, Perstorp had put a number of years into the development of the project, but decided to divest its involvement in the field to instead focus on aldehyde-based chemistry. Nexam Chemical currently has fifteen employees in Sweden and eight in Scotland. The Company’s head office and R&D are in Lund, Sweden, but its production takes place in St. Andrews, Scotland”

Ongoing partnerships and customer projects

“Since Nexam Chemical’s technology was introduced in 2009, a number of development projects and partnerships have been entered into with a range of leading parties, of which several are world leaders in their respective niches. They include BASF, Repsol, IRPC, Sumitomo, ABB, NASA and Rolls-Royce. Nexam Chemical currently works with over 20 of the world’s 100 largest chemicals and materials companies.”

Vision and mission

Nexam Chemical’s vision is to be a recognised world leader in the field of property modification of plastic and polymer materials via heat-activated crosslinking.

The scientific key.

But before C.E.S.I. continues, let´s halt and highlight a few statements depicted in this article:

The author “BSV” quotes (slightly edited and translated by C.E.S.I.)

The article ends with a milestone quote fr Nexam CEO Per Morin quote from a Redeye (video) presentation.

“For us this is almost as Losec, we will be protected for 20 years and we can dictate who will get to do it and on what terms …”

  • C.E.S.I. does not believe that Nexam is developing a ground braking product, because…
  • C.E.S.I. is 100% convinced that Nexam is developing an array of ground breaking products.
  • C.E.S.I. also claims that the CEO´s quote “For us this is almost as Losec” is an understatement in respect to scientific quality.

Why? Here is why:

Losec, i. e. Omeprazole, is a selective and irreversible proton pump inhibitor. It suppresses stomach acid secretion by specific inhibition of the H +/K + ATPase system. Because this enzyme system is regarded as the acid (proton, or H+) pump within the gastric mucosa, omeprazole will inhibit the final step of acid production. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Omeprazole.  However, the beauty is in the fine details of the chemistry! The drug Omeprazole is activated by stomach acid (by protonation of the pyridine moiety, which triggers the remaining desired cascade of events). Thus, Omeprazole should be defined as a target seeking missile.

Likewise, the beauty of the Nexam cross linker is also in the fine details of the chemistry! Cross linker molecule number 1 covalently binds both the polymer and the cross linker-polymer conjugates of the cross linker molecules number 2 and number 3. Thus, the Nexam cross linker molecules are double target seeking missiles! Thus, C.E.S.I. claims that the CEO statement “For us this is almost as Losec” is an understatement in respect to scientific quality. Both the description, the chemistry, the impact and the hidden simplicity is hard to grasp, especially for a non-chemist..

Therefore, the scientific key will also be explained in one single picture, which was also appreciated the small children of C.E.S.I. In fact, this synthetic scheme was C.E.S.I.s´ contribution to the family´s joint art weekend session…

PLEASE CLICK PICTURE TO ENLARGE

Nexam PNG

C.E.S.I. was only 99% confident that the combination of the Nexam polymers was a genius application of the historical 1866 Berthelot reaction. This key question had to be addressed, so C.E.S.I. submitted this question and this exact picture included…, to the Nexam CEO Per Morin and Daniel Röme, PhD and NEXAM Director of Business Development & Innovation. The content was much appreciated, confirmed and approved. Logically, Per and Daniel recommended C.E.S.I. to add another 4 words to the title: “A first and simplified crash course on Nexam Chemical Crosslinking perspective”.

Likewise, Per and Daniel also stressed that this simplification dedicated to non-chemists was appealing (Sept 25, 2014). They recommended C.E.S.I. not to edit the early draft picture “too much” (most likely, they also wished you, the reader of the manuscripts´ final version , a few moments of laughter.

However, C.E.S.I. came to the conclusion that a non-chemist still would not grasp the scientific beauty of the Nexam technology. This conclusion resulted in a few additional graphic views to illustrate the Nexam technology:

CLICK PICTURE TO ENLARGE!

 Benzene Diamond Graphene Introduction FINAL3

CLICK PICTURE TO ENLARGE!

Sunday FINAL Berthelot

CLICK PICTURE TO ENLARGE!

CYCLOTRIpng240SUN final

Key scientific messages in these graphic slides:

  • Nexam´s cross linker design is a genius application of the “forgotten” Berthelot reaction
  • The Berthelot reaction – as such – has been ignored (and been forgotten about!) by scientific communities, presumably due to the inherent issues in other non cross-linker applications (i. e. “normal” synthetic chemistry).
  • The core of the Nexam cross linker technology end-products is a Benzene derivative. Benzene derivatives are very stable. This derivative should be a perfect central hub (=knot) in most multidimensional polymer frameworks! Nexam technology is not solely genius – It is unique!

Nexam competitors?

C.E.S.I fails to find Nexam competitors. Most likely, there is competition in this specific cross linker technology, but C.E.S.I. can not find any relevant “Nexam threats”. The most interesting finding is this article:

http://www.ptonline.com/articles/radiation-crosslinking-boosts-nylon-properties

“TechnoCompound offers nylon 6 compounds that can be crosslinked with standard electron-beam technology, including conveyor batch processing, in-line wire/cable processing, and film/sheet processing. Companies can utilize existing electron-beam processing equipment to replace higher-cost thermoplastics with high-performing and more economical crosslinkable nylon (see Table 1). TechnoCompound’s compounds have been targeted for electrical connectors, with a strong focus on automotive applications where higher temperature performance is required.”

And the article summarizes:

“OTHER ACTIVITIES IN CROSSLINKED NYLON

Most of the development activity and commercial use of crosslinked nylons has taken place in Europe and Asia. Sumitomo Chemicals was among the first companies that pursued crosslinked nylons. By 2005, the company had developed new radiation-crosslinking nylon 66 molding compounds, which were adapted commercially for heat-resistant electrical connectors.

In late 2011, BASF (U.S. office in Florham Park, N.J.) and Sweden’s Nexam Chemical, a supplier of heat-activated crosslinkers for polymers, forged an exclusive cooperation agreement to develop and commercialize crosslinkable nylon 66 for automotive and electrical/electronic applications as initial targets.

Foster Corp., Dayville, Conn., developed its Fostalink crosslinkable elastomeric nylon compounds for medical applications such as catheters and valving, and nonmedical applications such as heat-shrink valving.”

C.E.S.I. : Examples of TechnoCompound´s crosslinker technology and specific cross linkers:

“Nylons 6, 66, and 11 can be radiation crosslinked, but the first two require addition of a crosslinking agent. For example, the polyfunctional monomer triallyl isocyanurate or triallyl-cyanurate can be compounded into nylon pellets. The crosslinkable pellets can then be molded, extruded, or otherwise formed into the final product”

A google triallyl isocyanate price search, makes C.E.S.I. feel like the scientist Mr Walt in the cutting edge quality TV series “Breaking Bad”:

http://www.alibaba.com/showroom/triallyl-cyanurate.html

Despite the low cost of “triallyl isocyanate” (1-2 US$ / Kilogram), this cross linker is based on “electron beam technology”, which to C.E.S.I seems inferior to standard heat activation of cross linkers (Nexam-BASF. Nexam-Armacell, Nexam-X, Nexam-Y etc. etc.)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Electron_beam_processing

Very interestingly, the Nexam CEO Per Morin touch upon this subject in an Introduce.se Nexam Video interview (June 10th, 2014). His conclusions are in accordance with the C.E.S.I. conclusions: “Electron Beem technology has been around for 50 years, it´s simply too expensive”

http://www.introduce.se/foretag/nexam/intervjuer/2014/6/nexam—intervju-med-vd-per-palmqvist-morin-och-forskningschef-dane-momcilovic/

And the competition from the giants within Process Polymer industry? Well, it seems that theese “key industry leaders” are aligning themseves to the core Nexam technology…

Nexam – Scalability issues?

Daniel Röme, PhD and NEXAM Director of Business Development & Innovation and Per Morin Nexam CEO:

Translated and slightly edited by C.E.S.I (!):

“I judge the risk of being unable to scale up production as relatively small,” says Daniel Rome. Instead, he assesses the risk of postponed projects as higher. This has happened before for Nexam. When plastic manufacturers are in reorganizations or depressed market conditions, they prioritize ongoing projects and existing customers in front of the development projects in where Nexam are involved. Nexam believes it can provide more information about pet foam-scaling during September or at the next quarterly report, and CEO Per Morin estimates that Nexam could ultimately turnaround around 50 million a year on the pet foam project with this specific client. Generally, Nexam Chemical aims towards gross margins around 40-50 per cent, he says, but declines due to many uncertain parameters to provide any more long-term sales forecast. According to the Nexam CEO, Per Morin: Today, we can not see a need for a rights issue to scale up production with connected associated working capital requirements, “No, instead we’ll solve the working capital requirements by negotiating with our customers and suppliers”

Original swedish version in link below (please use google translate):

http://www.privataaffarer.se/direkt-nv/nexam-upprepar-prognos-om-breakeven-2h-2014-vd-545809
C.E.S.I. conclusion: Nexam is Nexam´s worst enemy, or?

The molecules, i. e. the products, in the Nexam pipeline are extremely easy to synthesise for most chemists ( a person skilled in the art of constructing new molecules). One might argue that Nexam can produce the linkers in the most cost efficient way and this might be true today, but potentially not in the future or even near future. C.E.S.I. predicts that it would take an experienced Synthetic Chemist (e. g. C.E.S.I.) approximately 5-15 days to synthesize (= to construct) one or a few grams of cross linker material. C.E.S.I. has + 13 years of experience in small scale small molecule synthesis. C.E.S.I. can not understand that a high quality process company with a vibrant creative environment should, per default, fail to copy the Nexam cross-linkers with roughly the same production cost (or even at lower production). Therefore, securing the intellectual Property (IP) must at all times be on top of Nexam´s highest priority agenda. From the massive IP press release news flow from Nexam, C.E.S.I. concludes that the Nexam CEO and the Nexam board has understood this key issue. Thus, C.E.S.I. is thrilled of excitement. Now, it seems that analysts and the market “demand” a big order from a key industry process company. Today, C.E.S.I. does not share the analyst’s and the market´s demand. C.E.S.I. would like to see even a few more “new patent press releases” prior to the announcement of the first big order. However, the recent small order announcement is a key milestone (see below). This order is a another “proof of concept” i. e. it is a solid proof that the nexam technology is not solely of academic interest… C.E.S.I. predicts that Nexam will be a key player in the next industry revolution (New superior bulk- and advanced materials).

http://www.nexamchemical.com/en/Investors/Press-releases/Pressmeddelande/?releaseid=1701030

http://www.nexamchemical.com/en/Investors/

The world of plastics and polymers is wide and complex. There are tons of materials out there and only some of them can and have been optimized for use in 3D printing. So, if you were a company that produced some of the most advanced polymeric mixes out there, what would you do? You would probably do what Sweden based Nexam Chemicals just did for its PEPA Crosslinker: develop a process for using it for 3D printing with thermoplastics.

Nexam is known for developing technology and products that improve the properties of polymeric materials using conventional processing equipment (i.e. extruders). Its technology is used for cross linking polymers (which in principle can consist of an unlimited number of monomers) and oligomers (which consist of only a few monomers) to create new cross linked polymers with superior properties.

Controlled crosslinking can give the original polyamide enhanced properties in terms of chemical resistance and thermal/dimensional stability, make it stronger during use and make it more recyclable. It can also improve throughput and enable new processes.

According to the latest Chinese patent filed in China by the Institute of Chemistry at the Chinese Academy of Sciences, that is what the Crosslinker PEPA material (aka Neximid 100) will do, by enabling new methods and new capabilities for 3D printing of polyamide thermoplastics, giving nylon properties that in certain circumstances may allow it to be used to replace metal components.

http://3dprintingindustry.com/2014/09/26/nexam-chemical-gets-3d-printing-crosslinker-pepa/

And the current Nexam portfolio? There is still room for improvements.

CLICK PICTURE TO ENLARGE!

Nexam produktportfölj by CESI

Nexam – Better plastics, Final conclusions by C.E.S.I.

  • Increased processability equalls…
  • New polymers in new processes in new products
  • Increased thermo stability (heat stability)
  • Increased chemical stability
  • Increased mechanical stability
  • Increased UV
  • Increased “total plastic properties” to a reduced price
  • Nexam´s customers can direct use the Nexam products, without associated major hardware refurbishment costs
  • Last 6 months: The Nexam technology has been introduced for new world leading companies.
  • Increased level of activity in the company
  • Solely, the Armacell and BASF project can respectively result in a turnaround of 10 mSEK year 1 and 50 mSEK year 2 – with a net marin of 40% (!)
  • Nexam predicts that news regarding more new applications soon will be announced (electronics, Asian energy sector, european plastic recycling projects),
  • In the future: Nexam predicts additional new nylon applications
  • In the future: Nexam predicts ”some concepts involving polyolefins”
  • A new product is under evaluation in china

The Nexam case is – without competition – C.E.S.I.s´ all time favorite company and investment call!

A prediction of the near future share price is slightly silly and surprisingly difficult.

A prediction of the 2019 year share price is also slightly silly, and also impossible.

C.E.S.I. is biassed and extremely positive.

Why?

Nexam End 1

…and…

End 3

C.E.S.I. has granted the approval to share these official Nexam slides (Per Morin). Original material is available at http://www.nexamchemicals.com (presentation section)

Interim Financial Statements for Quarter 3, July–September 2014

Entering into a new phase with high speed

Several new projects have been initiated during the quarter, mainly with European customers, and Nexam Chemical has delivered products to several of them. Our partnership with Armacell is progressing, albeit with some delays. We are also poised to begin a project funded by Eurostar that we will be working on together with Armacell and The European Van Company. The aim of the project is to upgrade recycled PET for use in PET foam and other applications. We were informed in the summer that this project will receive funding from Eurostar. In addition, many other entities in Europe are testing Nexam Chemical’s formulations mainly for upgrading recycled PET resin for various applications. Nexam Chemical entered into a cooperation agreement with its polyethylene partner IRPC over the summer for development and commercialization of modified polyolefins. IRPC has informed us that they now have passed the development phase, with respect to a polyethylene quality for pipes, and will begin testing the quality for approval together with their end client in the autumn/winter. This will be an interesting and potentially large application area for our company. Nexam Chemical held a technical launch of its new high-temperature resin, NEXIMID® MHT-R, in the beginning of October and we have already received several inquiries from around the world. In addition to the project with Rolls Royce and Swerea SiComp, we are expecting several companies to initiate projects with the new resin in the coming years. The in-depth section of this report features a fairly new area for Nexam Chemical: liquid crystalline polymers, or LCP plastics as they are often referred to. This material is rapidly gaining ground, especially in the electronics industry, where Nexam Chemical has already established itself as a supplier of products for property improvement.

Best regards, C.E.S.I.

The author, Cutting Edge Science Invest, is a Nexam Chemical share holder. Cutting Edge Science Invest can not guarantee, or take into  accountability, the content of truth and accuracy of the information in this article/post.Thus, Cutting Edge Science Invest requires that a possible reader gather complimentary information if any type of investment in the company described above is considered.

Cutting Edge Science Invest provides personally biased information and at best also “general information and opinions”.

The article/post does not contain professional investment advice.