To offer a drop-in solution to overcome the PA66 shortage, we developed an alternative material: The Akulon® IG series is a portfolio of material grades made by combining the strength of PA6 and PA46 – two materials that are fully independent of the Adiponitrile/hexamethyldiamine supply.
Stanyl 30 years strong: the story of the world’s most successful high-temperature polyamide
Over the last 30 years, Stanyl® (PA46) has become a household name in the industry because of the unique benefits it brings our customers in a wide range of applications, from cooking utensils used in hot boiling oil to challenging automotive applications. This year we are celebrating the 30th anniversary of Stanyl.
It was in the 1930s when Wallace Carothers, a well-known American chemist credited with the invention of nylon, made the first notion of PA46. However, the development was shelved, and it was not until 40 years later that a Dutch scientist, R.J. Gaymans, working at Twente University of Technology in The Netherlands, explored this nylon further. His research resulted in the publication of an article, in the Journal of Polymer Science, about the preparation and properties of nylon 46.
In the 1980s, DSM collaborated with Twente University of Technology and mastered the industrialized production process of nylon 46. This resulted in the construction of a pilot plant in Geleen, The Netherlands, where in 1989 the first bags of Stanyl were shipped to an automotive customer.
Success from day one
The success of Stanyl opened a new class of materials—the high-temperature polyamides.
Over the years, DSM developed a broad product portfolio under the brand name of Stanyl—specifically for electronic connector markets and many automotive application fields. These products range from glass fiber, carbon fiber and aramid fiber reinforced to lubricated grades and flame-retardant grades, and for many processes like injection molding, blow molding, extrusion and fiber spinning.
The invention of our Diablo technology allowed parts made of Stanyl to be exposed to high temperatures up to 230°C for a significantly longer time, up to several thousand hours. This was a breakthrough innovation and allowed automakers to downsize their engines even further and allowed higher boost pressures.
Why Stanyl leads the pack
There are two unique reasons Stanyl has led the pack for 30 years. First, Stanyl is a symmetric polymer, meaning that the distance between the amide groups is always the same, which allows the polymer to easily form crystals in all directions.
It zips in both ways, so to say, no matter what the orientation of the molecule is. Second, the amide density is the highest of all polyamides—there are many hydrogen bonds per volume unit. These two characteristics result in fast and high crystallization levels, up to 70%.
This high crystallinity in combination with the high amount of hydrogen bonds result in three unique benefits of Stanyl:
1. Excellent mechanical properties above the glass transition temperature
2. Excellent wear and friction performance
3. Extremely good flow behavior in combination with mechanical performance
Stanyl is often unbeatable when two out of these three unique benefits are required in the application.
Every day we keep innovating and adding new unique materials to the Stanyl Portfolio to meet our customers’ needs of tomorrow. This portfolio offers exciting materials that manage heat, friction and loads, making cars cleaner and safer, household equipment more durable and electronics thinner and safer.
Two-wheeler technical know-how: DSM’s materials provide the strength and durability that electric scooters need
A number of e-scooter components require specialized materials to ensure safe and reliable performance. DSM’s portfolio includes materials designed to meet the specific needs of these applications.
How to survive the structural PA66 shortage
Under current market conditions, the supply chain for polyamide 66 (PA66) is under pressure. With the surge in demand for developing lightweight vehicles and pushing the connectivity revolution forward, supply is too concentrated to reliably meet global demand.