PEEK Injection Molding
Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) is a high-strength, high-temperature thermoplastic with superior mechanical and chemical properties ideal for injection molding applications.
Polyetheretherketone (PEEK) replaces other materials, such as metals and composites, because of its stiffness and strength. This high-performance thermoplastic polymer offers several benefits across various industries due to its unique combination of properties.
Due to these exceptional properties, PEEK finds applications in a wide range of industries including aerospace, automotive, medical, electronics, chemical processing, and more. It is valued for its ability to replace metals in various high-performance applications while offering advantages like reduced weight, corrosion resistance, and design flexibility.
PEEK is commonly used for injection molding tiny parts and is widely used in micro-molding applications. It’s very stiff and durable, perfect for small features.
Ensure the success of your PEEK-based project by partnering with an experienced PEEK processor like Spectrum. Examples of some of our successful injection molded applications include:
Many aspects of processing and machinery change once you surpass 600°F or 320°C. PEEK is a semi-crystalline material, meaning a portion of its molecules form crystals, and all its performance is affected by its crystallinity.
To manufacture PEEK parts with full crystallinity, processing needs to be controlled in such a way as to maximize that crystallinity, and part geometry affects the processing methods to achieve that crystallinity.
PEEK is processed at temperatures over 600°F or 320°C and requires specially built processing machinery and tooling that needs to be constructed differently to handle elevated processing temperatures and flash points. Implant grades of PEEK are more expensive and require collaboration between the material manufacturer, processor, and customer. Additional costs do apply after value-added compounding.
Spectrum is experienced in molding, extruding, and 3D printing PEEK. Not only can we identify the correct grade for the processing method, but we also understand material properties. We can offer PEEK as an alternative when a customer is looking for a substitute material. When required, we consult and engage the material suppliers to obtain the best possible material composition for your application.
PEEK can withstand continuous operating temperatures up to 240°C (464°F) and short-term exposure to temperatures as high as 300°C (572°F) without significant loss of mechanical properties. This makes it suitable for applications in harsh environments, such as aerospace and automotive components.
PEEK is highly resistant to a wide range of chemicals, including acids, bases, and most organic solvents. This makes it an excellent choice for components exposed to aggressive chemical environments in industries like chemical processing, oil and gas, and medical.
PEEK exhibits minimal thermal expansion and contraction, even at elevated temperatures. This dimensional stability is crucial in applications where tight tolerances and precision are required, such as in aerospace and medical implants.
PEEK offers a good balance of stiffness, strength, and toughness. It has a high tensile strength and modulus, making it suitable for structural applications where strength and rigidity are critical.
PEEK has excellent wear resistance, which makes it suitable for applications where parts are subject to friction and abrasion. It is often used in bearing and bushing applications.
PEEK is considered biocompatible and is used in medical applications, such as implants and surgical instruments. It is well-tolerated by the human body and can be used in long-term medical devices.
PEEK is transparent to X-rays, which is advantageous in medical imaging applications. It allows for clear imaging without interference from the material itself.
PEEK can be easily machined using conventional metalworking tools. This allows for the production of complex and precise components.
PEEK is inherently flame retardant, meaning it has a high resistance to combustion and will not support a flame once the ignition source is removed.
PEEK has a good resistance to environmental stress cracking, ensuring long-term performance in various applications.
PEEK is relatively lightweight compared to metals like steel and aluminum. This can lead to weight savings in applications where weight is a critical factor.