RheTech Inc. brings more options to its RheVision biocomposite thermoplastics.
The Whitmore Lake, Mich., company has added agave fiber and coconut fiber as new reinforcements for polyolefins. The new fibers complement wood fiber, rice hull and flax fiber reinforcements RheTech has been offering.
“We are responding to an important and growing market of natural biofiber thermoplastics that are able to displace other materials that are reinforced with traditional mineral reinforcements and fiberglass, while providing similar cost benefits and often better performance characteristics our customers require,” stated RheTech vice president of business development Jim Preston.
RheTech sources agave fiber as a residual byproduct from the manufacture of tequila. The very strong fiber is well suited to applications that require impact strength, stiffness and an unusual fibrous appearance.
Coconut fiber derives from ground coconut shell after usable products are harvested. The fibers from Southeast Asia give a biocomposite that is very stiff and has a very hard surface. One target application is vehicle interior trim as an alternative to talc-filled polypropylene, RheTech claims.
The new fibers are offered in formulations containing 10 to 50 percent reinforcement content in a range of polyolefins, including post-consumer scrap.
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