October 9, 2003 PFA Technical Program, Montreal, Quebec

“MDI-Based Viscoelastic Foam for the Furnishings Market”, Raymond Neff, BASF Corporation - October 9, 2003 PFA Technical Program, Montreal, Quebec

Viscoelastic foam continues to grow in acceptance, although widespread use in furnishings has been limited by factors such as poor processing and durability. In particular, processing and the desired slow recovery behavior are difficult to achieve at high density. In response to these issues, BASF developed PLURACEL™ slow recovery foam. This all-MDI slabstock technology offers numerous advantages including excellent processing, physical properties and durability. The formulations require no tin catalyst, exhibit fast cure and the foams are sufficiently open-celled so that they do not require crushing. Foams of density ranging from 2.3 to 13 pcf are reported in this paper.

“A Bromine Based Flame Retardant for Flexible Polyurethane Foams”, William R. Brown, Albemarle Corporation - October 9, 2003 PFA Technical Program, Montreal, Quebec

This paper reports on the development of a new flame retardant for flexible polyurethane foams. Flame retardancy was determined by California Technical Bulletin 117, Section A, screening test method. Scorch testing results were obtained using an internally developed test method. Work was done on foams with densities ranging from 1.1 pcf to 1.8 pcf at isocyanate indices from 1.15 to 1.01. The resulting flame retardant, called XP-7085, has been shown to produce quality foams that can be made on existing production equipment.

“Reformulating for the Long Term”, Richard Rose, Great Lakes Chemical Corporation - October 9, 2003 PFA Technical Program, Montreal, Quebec

Raw materials used to produce flexible polyurethane foams are under scrutiny. Certain additives used in FPF are being examined for possible persistence and bioaccumulation. It has become apparent that industry must take steps to develop sustainable alternatives. This paper focuses on flame retardants, however much of the information will also aid in understanding how chemicals in general are being scrutinized. This paper provides a framework for reformulating to help improve the sustainability of new products and allow reduction of future reformulating costs.

“MultiFill: An Innovative Technology for Processing Slabstock Foam with Fillers”, Ingo Wilkes, Hennecke Machinery Group, Bayer Polymers - October 9, 2003 PFA Technical Program, Montreal, Quebec

NovaFlex® - MultiFill is a new technology for processing slabstock foams with fillers such as suitable melamine and calcium carbonate. This process can be used for in-line filler addition into the main Polyol stream or for batch blending.

This paper provides a solution for mixing fillers in the CO2 foaming process using mixing ratios of from 100:0 to 100:100 parts Polyol to filler using a separate metering line system, which will be added to the existing equipment. The inline process allows filler levels to be changed on the fly. The technology is designed to process filler particle sizes in excess of 50m and to eliminate filler agglomerations in the Polyol/filler mixture, which could cause pinholes in the foam structure.

“Converting FPF Scrap Into Polyol Through Glycolsis”, Gerhard Behrendt, H&S and Edge-Sweets - October 9, 2003 PFA Technical Program, Montreal, Quebec

Currently about 8 million metric tonnes of polyurethane are produced annually in the world. About 5 to 10% semi-finished products and final products result in manufacturing waste. Post-consumer materials add additional polyurethane foam product to the waste stream. This paper presents an alternative to transesterfication technology that can be used to reduce landfill disposal and incineration needs. The new glycolsis process can be performed using continuous or batch processing in as little as 20 minutes at moderate temperatures to recover useable polyols from dissolved FPF wastes.

“Low Odor, Low Emission Additives for Polyurethane Flexible Slabstock Foam”, Juan Burdeniuc, Air Products And Chemicals - October 9, 2003 PFA Technical Program, Montreal, Quebec

A relatively recent market trend shows increasing interest in polyurethane foam additives that are not going to be released into the environment. Although currently available amine catalysts are acceptable by today’s standards, the current competitive environment for better products is moving towards more environmentally benign products with lower odor, fogging, staining and ultimately lower exposure of end users to chemicals.

This paper reports recent efforts to produce a low odor and low emission polyurethane catalyst. that can chemically bind into the polyurethane foam matrix, making its migration out of the foam difficult, while providing a good quality product. The paper demonstrates that the new catalyst can afford not only dimensional stability and processability, but also providing a polyurethane foam product with low odor and low emissions up to temperatures as high as 90oC.

“Final Review of an API Interlaboratory Study for the Development of an Upholstered Furniture Fire Test”, Kurt Reimann, Alliance for the Polyurethanes Industry - October 9, 2003 PFA Technical Program, Montreal, Quebec

Research and development studies by API member companies have been conducted to develop a small-open-flame fire test method for upholstered furniture composites. The basic test method is one under consideration by the state of California and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.

The test method incorporates a flame ignition source, similar to a match or cigarette lighter, and uses a laboratory mock-up with the same components as would be used in an actual furniture item. The fabric and foam, as well as batting and interliner, if appropriate, are assembled in a manner similar to that described in British Standard BS 5852. An inter-laboratory study (ILS), was conducted with 12 laboratories, using 7 composite specimens with three replicates of each specimen. The specimens consisted of a range of upholstered furniture compositions. In addition to the laboratory-scale tests, large scale and full-scale experiments were conducted by two of the laboratories.

The results of the inter-laboratory study, including the assessment of an appropriate “test result” for the method, are discussed including the repeatability and reproducibility of the laboratory results, and the results obtained in the large and full-scale testing.