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Friday, 10 February 2017

The ultimate in high slip and stability

Croda Polymer Additives is a leading producer of organic slip and anti-block additives used to modify and enhance the properties of plastics and rubbers. Croda's additives are designed to impart a range of effects so manufacturers can tailor both polymer processing and performance as well as improve the look of end products. Produced from natural oils and fats, Croda’s product ranges are used to solve many slip, blocking, scratch, torque and mould release problems faced by the polymer industry. 
The newest addition to Croda’s Polymer Additives portfolio of high-performance slip additives is Incroslip SL. This product provides both high slip performance and long-term oxidative stability to protect against undesired changes in taste, odour and colour in challenging or consumer-sensitive plastics applications, such as packaging films or automotive parts. 
Key Benefits
  • Incroslip SL demonstrates a number of benefits in many different applications areas, including:
  • High and long lasting slip
  • Low application and release torque
  • Excellent organoleptics
  • High oxidative stability
  • Scratch and scuff protection
  • Low visible bloom
  • Enhanced mould release properties
High and Long Lasting Slip in Film Applications
Traditionally, polymer slip additives offer the practical benefits of easier processing and handling, however under stressed conditions, like heat or UV exposure, these additives can break down causing a loss of slip performance and difficulties in processing or end use. Incroslip SL is the newest innovation from Croda and offers high, long lasting slip benefits for improved performance in film applications.
Where standard grade erucamides can lose slip performance after around four weeks of UV exposure, Incroslip SL maintains its slip performance for much longer. This means packaging film can be stored for longer without the risk of losing slip performance. 
In fact, during recent lab tests, Incroslip SL demonstrated high slip performance in LDPE blown film even after 4 years exposure to heat and natural sunlight. During this time, the slip performance of standard erucamide failed completely, eventually ending up with a kinetic CoF value higher than that of behenamide and close to that of the control. This is considered low slip and would not solve the problems associated with using the film or in the end application. Incroslip SL however, gives a kinetic CoF value that remains low over time, meaning a high slip performance is maintained. 
Oxidative Stability
Standard slip additives can demonstrate poor oxidative stability, which can lead to issues with odour, taste and taint issues within the polymer and end application. Incroslip SL is a fully saturated product meaning it is less prone to oxidation than other traditional slip additives. This results in a product which will not lose slip performance, change colour or give off odour, even after the ozonation sterilisation process.
Is oxidative stability particularly important for applications where taste and odour are critical such as water bottle caps and food packaging. The superior stability of Incroslip SL was demonstrated by a panel of volunteers when 70% of volunteers rated Incroslip SL the lowest or least offensive odour compared to other slip additives such as standard grade ceramide or behenamide. Interestingly, Incroslip SL was ranked lower in odour than blank polymer and behenamide.
Mould and Torque Release
Mould release additives can be used to help remove parts from the mould, improve surface quality and decrease waste while eliminating the need for silicone sprays and allowing for continuous production. Incroslip SL can act as a mould release additive, helping with production and end-use. 
In water bottle caps, Incroslip SL can help in the manufacture of the caps but also in end-use with improved application and release torque. It can allow the caps to be tightly applied to bottles while still allowing easy removal. Incroslip SL exhibits improved application and releases torque in polypropylene closures when compared to erucamide and behenamide.
Anti-scratch with Low Visible Bloom
Some polymer applications such as automotive interior parts, high-end cosmetic packaging or high gloss household appliances can easily scratch in transport or use, resulting in items or parts which can look low quality. Brand owners want to increase the lifetime of their products by reducing scratching and scuffing and improving surface appearance.
Incroslip SL has been shown to reduce the scratch width, depth and visibility but with no negative impact on parts including low visible bloom, low odour and maintained gloss. This combination of benefits makes the product perfect for use in challenging conditions and applications. It works at low levels from within the formulation to enhance plastics’ surface properties with no detrimental effect on mechanical properties.
Some migrating additives can break down over time causing visible blooming, colour change or odour problems. Incroslip SL, however, has been shown to reduce scratch visibility without any negative impact on the part. For example, in interior automotive applications, some anti-scratch additives can break down after prolonged exposure to heat and UV light causing a visible bloom, odour and tackiness on the surface of the part. The superior stability of Incroslip SL means that it doesn’t breakdown, resulting is long term performance and no issues with odour, bloom or tackiness. 
Conclusion
Incroslip SL is a new product innovation which can deliver a range of benefits to a number of different polymers and applications. The high slip performance is similar to erucamide type slip and mould release additives meaning this product can be used in film and moulded parts. It's high oxidative stability results in superior performance compared to standard slip additives, meaning no negative effects in long-term use such as odour, paint and taste issues. 
Incroslip SL is the perfect choice for any film or moulding application where long-term performance, stability and quality cannot be compromised.
Authors: Michelle Downham & Rachna Spanish, Marketing, Croda
© Chemical Today Magazine
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