ORLANDO, FLA. — Lubrizol Corp. is sending its thermoplastic polyurethane products into medical products, foam and film.
The Wickliffe, Ohio-based firm is seeing its Pathway-brand aliphatic TPUs grow in drug delivery systems, Lubrizol LifeSciences vice president and general manager Deb Langer said at NPE 2015 in Orlando. The materials offer biostability in under-skin applications, some of which are time-released.
“In most cases, these are new applications,” Langer said. “And some are for drugs that can't be injected or taken orally.” The Pathway line is commercial now and is being made at a Lubrizol plant in Wilmington, Mass.
The firm's BounCell-X microcellular TPU foam can offer toughness, durability and elasticity in footwear and automotive applications, according to Americas sports and recreation marketing manager Kenneth Kim. The foam is recyclable and doesn't require a chemical blowing agent, he added.
BounCell-X can compete with EVA or standard PU foam. It's optimized to work with Trexel Inc.'s MuCell foaming technology, Kim said, allowing customers to buy the material in pellet form and then make it into foam.
On the film side, Lubrizol TPUs are being used in paint-protective film in the high-end auto market, film and sheet market segment manager Elie Merheb said. The film has no gels and has good clarity and yellowing performance, he explained.
Film-grade TPUs can compete with urethane or acrylic-based products. Commercial applications should be in place within the next 12 months.
Lubrizol employs 8,000 worldwide and posted sales of $7 billion in 2014.