Plastic Design

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Focusing on Collaborative Innovation in Plastic Design

DuPont supports innovative plastic design, whether the challenge is making a new product or improving an existing product.

DuPont has hundreds of materials grades, including the industry’s widest line of renewably sourced biopolymers. These biopolymers are made in part from renewable non-food plant rather than petro-chemical feedstock.  Equally important, DuPont materials are backed by a network of material science resources across Asia, Europe and the Americas. It’s a combination that is helping forward-looking manufacturers from medical devices to running shoes. DuPont collaborates to help customers meet regulatory standards, overcome design challenges and make plastic design less reliant on non-renewable petro-chemical feedstock.

Renewable Sourcing for the Real World

DuPont has a line of renewably sourced polymers that are a key pillar in supporting progressive plastic design.  Advanced biopolymers made from 20-26% non-food plant-based sources offer the performance manufacturers need to change materials. Now, it’s possible to reduce use of fossil fuel-based raw materials, without sacrificing design freedom or manufacturing efficiency.

Development Support for Specific Goals

Plastic design and processing know-how helps customers accomplish real business innovation. That can mean specifying for strength, light-weighting, finish and other properties. But it can also mean working with customers on their applications to help meet regulatory standards, integrate parts, minimize manufacturing risks or make products and processes less reliant on petro-chemicals.  DuPont has experience and global presence to help deliver multi-faceted solutions. Here are some examples of what some customers are doing now with renewably-sourced polymers:

DuPont™ Zytel® RS: Lightweight With High Impact Resistance

A vital head and neck support device developed by HANS Performance Products for racing drivers uses DuPont™ Zytel® RS renewably sourced nylon resin to provide high impact resistance, while significantly reducing weight.

The grade of Zytel® RS used is a toughened carbon-fiber/glass-fiber reinforced polyamide with excellent tensile strength, tensile modulus, flex modulus, impact strength and elongation. The new polyamide compound also has better chemical and moisture resistance versus PA66, making it an attractive choice for applications at temperatures below 120°C.  

DuPontTM Hytrel®: Strong and Flexible for Running Shoes

Another example of high-performance polymer design flexibility can be seen in three models of SKECHERS® running and training shoes, which utilize the strength and flexibility of DuPont™ Hytrel® thermoplastic polyester elastomer to help convert impact forces into forward motion. Material testing for 10-12 weeks was carried out for each shoe, in order to assess dynamic response and durability.

Hytrel® was also integral to the design and development of the Rhythm Foot, an innovative and affordable prosthetic created in collaboration with Niagara Prosthetics and Orthotics International Ltd. The Rhythm Foot was recognized with the gold award in the Rehabilitation and Assistive-Technology products category of the 2012 Medical Design Excellence Awards (MDEA).

A Multi-Polymer Solution: Sustainability for a Work Chair

The Generation by Knoll® work chair was developed with significant support from material science, processing and experienced application development at DuPont. This chair is designed to rearrange itself in response to its user.

What makes the chair’s flexing and supportive features possible is the use of high-performance DuPont thermoplastics, starting with renewably sourced DuPont™ Hytrel® RS TPC-ET for the Flex Back Net and DuPont™ Hytrel® TPC-ET and DuPont™ Crastin® PBT thermoplastic polyester resin for the Dynamic Suspension control.

Due in part to its use of renewably sourced materials from DuPont, Generation was the first product in the furniture industry to be rated Sustainable Platinum by the SMaRT© Consensus Sustainable Product Standard, a comprehensive, transparent, product rating that measures a product’s environmental, economic and social benefits over its life cycle and throughout its global supply chain, from raw materials extraction through reclamation or re-use.