3D printed PEEK for high temperature applications

6th September 2018
Posted By : Alex Lynn
3D printed PEEK for high temperature applications

 

Polyetheretherketon (PEEK) is considered one of the most powerful high-performance polymers, due to its mechanical, thermal and chemical resistance. Therefore, it is used as a replacement for materials such as steel, aluminium and other polymers.

One of the biggest markets for temperature resistant elements is the oil and gas industry where good sealings make the difference between efficient, safe-running operations and costly downtimes. Around the world, people are using 96 million barrels of oil and liquid fuels per day. Meanwhile forecasts predict a continuously rising market size through 2035.

Wherever solids, gases or liquids are being transported, structurally reliable and effective sealings are vital. Seals are applied where the containment of commodities is completed, measured, controlled or separated from moving parts. Typical applications are in the areas of flowmeters, end-caps or valves.

They get exposed to high pressure, extreme temperatures and an aggressive chemical environment. Therefore it is essential to use reliable materials withstanding those severe conditions. 3D printed PEEK is not only capable of enduring such extreme circumstances; the properties of the material are preserved. A common application for PEEK are split-ring seals, which are mainly used for reciprocating motion and in hydraulic swivel joints and transmissions. The inherent toughness and flexibility of the thermoplastic polymer allow the user to install the part without breaking it while achieving high strength and creep resistance at the same time to ensure a long and durable lifetime.

Another application of 3D printed PEEK is connectors. Connector designers are often confronted with design based challenges in order to maximise the connector performance without creating entirely new connector families. The design freedom made possible by the 3D printing technology supports product designers to produce PEEK connectors suitable for the requirements and advantaged among the competition.

Apium P220 Series 3D printers are specially developed for processing advanced materials. The Adaptive Heating System ensures the best possible temperature management for achieving highest quality print results. The open material system allows end-users to test their material options and discover the opportunities they have with 3D printing.


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