Conductive plastics are primarily used to prevent malfunction or damage caused by electromagnetic interference (EMI) and electrostatic build-up (ESD).
To meet the increasing demand for greater sustainability and provide more lightweight solutions, manufacturers are looking to close the recycling loop and make more durable, lightweight, and longer-lasting products.
Unlike conventional fillers, CarbonX® combines conductivity with lightweight reinforcement to provide greater impact resistance in both EMI and ESD ranges. These attributes offer significant advantages in terms of light weight, durability, processability, and recyclability.
ESD Crates & Pallets
X7 vs. Carbon Black + Glass Fibres
How do you improve impact resistance and recyclability without compromising conductivity and processability?
Combining glass fibres with conductive carbon black is an affordable way to impart reinforcement and ESD properties to thermoplastics.
But specialty carbon blacks are fragile and unable to achieve ESD range conductivity without compromising processability and impact resistance, and glass fibres are difficult to recycle because they break easily and lose their ability to reinforce upon re-processing.
CarbonX® opens up new opportunities to make more lightweight, more durable, and longer-lasting ESD pallets that are easier to process and fully recyclable.
Higher impact resistance
Compared to conductive carbon black and a reference material containing glass fibres in a polypropylene (PP) matrix, CarbonX® was able to achieve high conductivity while providing impact resistance that was 20 times greater than that of the glass fibre reference.
Low viscosity, good polymer-filler interaction, and excellent dispersion result in stronger, more uniform and lower-density compounds that can withstand higher shear compared to specialty carbon blacks at similar loadings.
This allows CarbonX® to tolerate higher throughput and be reprocessed or recycled multiple times without loss of mechanical and electrical properties – making it possible to improve processability and resource efficiency, reduce waste, and implement a closed-loop recycling scheme.
EMI Shielding EV Battery Pack
CarbonX® + carbon fibres vs. Aluminium
How do you make EV battery packs more lightweight without compromising impact resistance or high conductivity?
Metals like aluminium are often used to provide EMI shielding and mechanical protection because they are inexpensive and effective.
But a growing number of applications require thinner, more lightweight protection. Polymer composites offer a cheaper, more lightweight alternative, but most still underperform on EM shielding at high frequencies. Electric vehicles, for example, are about 25% heavier than traditional vehicles. A weight reduction would improve battery range and tire performance.
For this project, CarbonX® was used to reinforce PA6, with and without carbon fibres. The ability to combine high shielding effectiveness with stronger, more lightweight reinforcement makes it possible to design a more lightweight solution that meets industry requirements.
Longer battery range
The weight reduction is attributed to the density of the CarbonX® composite being much lower than aluminium, where every kilogram saved translates to 0.13 km of additional mileage.
High shielding effectiveness
On its own, CarbonX® achieved a shielding effectiveness of 60 decibels. The combination of CarbonX® and carbon fibre showed a synergistic shielding effectiveness of 85 decibels. These results demonstrate shielding capabilities on par with current targets in the automotive industry.
Are you interested in working with CarbonX and learning more about our performance in conductive plastics?
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