Teknor Apex Company and Arkema Inc. have entered into a strategic alliance that will broaden the range of breathable films by combining Arkema’s Pebax® thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) with Teknor Apex’s Terraloy® bioplastic, enabling manufacturers of housewrap to increase their product offerings and expand their commitment to sustainability.
Teknor Apex will be joined by Arkema at its exhibit in the NAHB International Home Builders Show (Booth S2125) to introduce a family of plastic compounds comprised of a blend of Pebax engineering-grade TPE with Teknor Apex’s Terraloy bioplastics, which are derived from plant-based, renewable resources. By varying the Terraloy biopolymer content, Teknor Apex has developed multiple grades of the blend, which can be used to produce films with various levels of moisture permeability. Such films can be bonded with nonwoven fabrics to form housewraps that allow moisture vapor to escape from homes, preventing mold and mildew, yet remain waterproof.
Teknor Apex is one of the world’s largest custom compounders of plastics and has developed a diversified range of biopolymer compounds under the Terraloy brand. Designed as alternatives to petrochemical-based plastics, Terraloy compounds enable manufacturers to partially or completely replace traditional plastics while retaining important processing and end use properties.
“Working cooperatively with Arkema, Teknor Apex has extended the applicability of Pebax elastomer in building and construction while retaining its capabilities as a lightweight, versatile, high-performance plastic,” said Edwin Tam, manager of new strategic initiatives for the Bioplastics Division of Teknor Apex.
As TPEs, Pebax products combine the advantages of thermoplastics with the elasticity of rubber and provide exceptional performance. When extruded into a thin film or laminated to a substrate, they offer excellent permeability to moisture vapor while remaining waterproof. They do not require an adhesive or bonding agent to adhere to synthetic nonwovens.
“We are excited to join forces with Teknor Apex,” said Laurent Cartier, Arkema’s Pebax TPE sales and business development manager. “Adding biopolymer to Pebax has broadened its breathability characteristics while maintaining good adhesion to fabric.”