High-Strength PEEK Coatings
Components made of metal, glass or ceramics can be coated using a finely powdered form of the high-performance plastic PEEK. The coatings can be applied electrostatically or via aqueous dispersions.
The coating material, which was developed by Victrex, is based on thermoplastic PEEK and is especially well-suited for use in aggressive environments. PEEK is very temperature-resistant and withstands long-term service temperatures of up to 250° C. The coatings exhibit high strength and are chemical-resistant even at elevated temperatures. In addition outstanding tribological properties, PEEK is characterized by positive combustion properties and achieves the VO rating in accordance with UL 94 without the need for flame-retardant additives. As a consequence, PEEK coatings offer significant benefits over other coating materials. In addition, they reduce the additional costs associated with machining of aluminium or stainless steel.
The fine powder consists of particles with a size ranging from 30 to 80µm. These are applied to the substrate, plasticized at about 400°C to form a continuous film and then subsequently cooled in air. This process can be repeated numerous times in order to produce the desired film thickness. When applied electrostatically, film thicknesses between 300 and 600 µm can be achieved. Thinner films can be produced by using aqueous dispersions.
In the course of the process, a wear-resistant, tough protective coating is created on the metal, ceramic or glass surface. Fields of application for PEEK coatings include analytical devices, semiconductor devices and medical devices. Since PEEK complies with FDA guidelines, use in the food processing industry is also possible. Because of its outstanding chemical resistance, PEEK is well-suited for exposure to the aggressive cleaners used in this sector. Additional fields of application include mixers/agitators and containers used in chemical processing as well as components that come into contact with high-purity fluids. In addition, components for the petrochemical industry that require special corrosion and wear resistance can be coated economically with PEEK.