Aaron Industries launches high melt flow recycled PP featuring Milliken DeltaMax performance modifier
New compound provides extremely high melt flow index and good impact performance
Aaron Industries Corp., a specialist in recycled plastic innovation, announced at the Plastics Recycling World Expo in May the launch of JET- FLO Polypro, its new high melt flow recycled polypropylene (PP) compound. JET-FLO Polypro, which features DeltaMax Performance Modifier from Milliken & Company, is among the first recycled PP materials to combine two properties that are normally mutually exclusive: extremely high melt flow index (MFI of 50-70 g/10 min.) and good impact performance (Notched Izod of 1.5-2.0), according to Aaron Industries. High MFI and good impact strength make JET-FLO Polypro an excellent choice for economical, highly durable thin-wall parts, such as housewares. By adding significant value to recycled PP, Aaron Industries says they are helping to encourage broader use of sustainable alternatives to virgin PP resin.
"Our new JET-FLO PP is a major step forward toward expanding the use of recycled plastics," said Robert M. Tocci, vice president of Aaron Industries Corp. "Manufacturers no longer have to sacrifice impact performance to achieve the high melt flow, which is essential for thin-wall molding and faster throughput. Our collaboration with Milliken to leverage DeltaMax technology has been a great success. Milliken is one of the few suppliers with the knowledge, enthusiasm and technical resources we needed to help us develop this new compound and drive true innovation in the recycling industry."
Aaron Industries and Milliken finalized the development of the JET-FLO compound in just seven months. The product, which is regionally available in eastern parts of the United States and Canada, is supplied as pellets in black and gray colors. Aaron Industries is exhibiting JET-FLO material samples and parts at its booth. Milliken is showcasing the company's DeltaMax Performance Modifiers and parts at its exhibit (booth #A235) at Compounding World Expo 2019, which is co-located with Plastics Recycling World and Plastics Extrusion World Expo.
Extending Performance and Processability of Recycled PP
According to Aaron Industries, although many manufacturers want to incorporate recycled PP into their applications to increase sustainability and reduce costs, they may face challenges in sourcing materials with the needed properties. This is particularly true when molding thin-wall parts requiring good impact resistance. A key issue facing recyclers is the large proportion of recycled content that comes from single-use applications like packaging. These material streams may lack the more-robust physical properties required for typical recycled PP applications like durable goods. Recyclers must also contend with variability in their feedstocks.
Historically, Aaron Industries has used peroxide to increase the MFI of its recycled PP. However, the company says peroxide reduces impact strength. Seeking a better solution, the company worked with Milliken to leverage its DeltaMax Performance Modifiers, which can increase MFI by as much as five times while maintaining impact strength. The DeltaMax technology enables recycled PP to deliver equal or better performance and processability compared to virgin resins.
Through performance enhancements to recycled PP, the new JET-FLO Polypro makes several contributions to the plastics industry's sustainability efforts, according to Aaron Industries. First, it allows manufacturers to replace or supplement virgin PP with recycled content that has similar melt flow and impact strength. Substituting recycled PP reduces the energy use, emissions and raw material consumption associated with producing new PP. Greater use of recycled PP also diverts waste plastic from landfills and extends the short lifespan of single-use applications through reuse in durable goods such as totes and storage containers. A higher MFI enables manufacturing at lower temperatures, which uses less energy and results in higher throughput due to shorter cycle times.
In addition to its environmental benefits, JET-FLO Polypro opens the door to new application opportunities, including new parts with more-complex designs and thinner-wall geometries, such as DVD cases, caps and closures, etc. From a processing standpoint, faster cycle times help avoid molded-in stress that can cause warpage.
"Our partnership with the Aaron Industries team is helping to elevate the value, performance and desirability of recycled PP resins," said Emily Blair, business development manager, Milliken. "Advanced additives like our DeltaMax technology can play an increasingly important role in solving the enormous challenge of plastic waste. Enhancing PP with DeltaMax can drive greater demand for recycled resins, extending plastics' useful life and strengthening the circular economy."
May 8 Blair presented a technical talk on the development of DeltaMax Performance Modifiers titled, "Enhancing the Properties of Recycled Polypropylene Resins to Uncover New Applications and Market Opportunities" at the Compounding World Conference.