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"High Stiff Lightweight Resin Sheet" Developed
Feb 25, 2015

SEKISUI CHEMICAL CO., LTD

-A new high stiff material that is lighter than metal and uses graphene-like carbon-

--Possesses the same stiffness at 1/3 the weight of a steel plate, and high designability due to its excellent thermoforming--

 

Sekisui Chemical Co., Ltd. (President: Naofumi Negishi, hereinafter called "Sekisui Chemical")'s High Performance Plastics Company (President: Keita Kato) has developed a layered "high stiff lightweight resin sheet" from reinforced resin sheets that combine graphene-like carbon, and polyolefin foam.
Using the combined characteristics of lightweightness and high stiffness that cannot be achieved with metals will in future promote a wide range of applications and development in such fields as Buildings and Infrastructures, Automobiles and Transportation.

 

1. Background to the Development

Sekisui Chemical cites the opening of such frontiers as "Creation of Housing/Social Infrastructure" and "Chemical Solutions" in its group vision for the High Performance Plastics Company to supply various plastic products in strategic fields such as Buildings and Infrastructures, Automobiles and Transportation, Electronics, and Life Sciences.

Therein, we became involved in the development of new lightweight materials from which environmental contributions are expected. 

 

2. Overview of "High Stiff Lightweight Resin Sheets"

1. Structure and Performance

As shown in the diagram below, the developed product, "high Stiff lightweight resin sheets", has an outer layer of reinforced resin sheets, which combine graphene-like carbon*, and an intermediate layer of polyolefin foam for a 3-layer configuration.

 

*Graphene-like carbon
Academically, graphene is formed by peeling graphite, which is a single molecule sheet comprising sp2 bonded carbon atoms with a thickness of 1 atom. Sekisui Chemical developed nano-composites with high stiffness and excellent shock resistance by evenly spreading graphene-like carbon (agglutinated sheets at the nano level with multiple layers of graphene) on a matrix resin. 

 

Fig.: Configuration of high stiff lightweight resin sheets

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Photo: Mold example

Fig.: Configuration of high stiff lightweight resin sheets

 

Photo: Mold example

 

The possession of this layered configuration enables both lightweightness and high stiffness, and as shown in the graph below, achieves the same stiffness with only 1/3rd the weight of steel plates.

 

Graph: Required weight to manifest the same stiffness

Graph: Required weight to manifest the same stiffness

 

Further, the main component of the "high stiff lightweight resin sheets" is thermoplastic resin, and so has excellent designability with easy heat molding such as press molds, etc., in the same way as regular plastic and differing from reinforced carbon fiber resin and reinforced glass fiber resin.

2. Specification Examples

Representative examples of the product specifications are shown in the table below. Type A focuses on stiffness, and Type B grades focus on lightweightness. In this way, it is possible to design a broad range of qualities tailored to the application, and the resin materials also have a high standard of shock resistance.

Physical Property

Unit

Type A
(Grade focusing on stiffness)

Type B
(Grade focusing on lightweightness)

Lightweightness(Weight)

g/m2

3500

2200

Stiffness(Strain gradient)

N/cm/5cm

750

550

Sheet Thickness

mm

10max.

10max.

   

3. Future Developments

In future, Sekisui Chemical will be involved with commercialization by promoting links with a broad range of business partners with the aim of developing applications in various fields such as Buildings and Infrastructures’ materials including architectural and civil engineering materials, and Automobiles and Transportation such as ships, aircraft, and railroads, etc. Further, as well as promoting the technical development of mass production, Sekisui Chemical also plans to supply product samples of the "high stiff lightweight resin sheets" in the summer of 2015.

 

Press Contact

SEKISUI CHEMICAL CO., LTD.
Corporate Communication Department, Public Relations Group
Fax: +81-(0)3-5521-0510


Disclaimer

This press release may contain forward-looking statements. Such forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and beliefs and are subject to a number of factors and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such statements due to changes in global economic, business, competitive market and regulatory factors.
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