A new family of medical-grade polyoxymethylene (POM) thermoplastics has been introduced by specialty materials company Celanese Corp. (Irving, TX). The tribologically modified materials reportedly enable the manufacture of medical devices with a low coefficient of friction and wear. The polymer also is said to reduce the amount of squeaking that may be heard when a medical device is operated, further improving patient comfort. On the manufacturing side, the material can be processed without the need for external lubrication.
"There was a demand from our customers for a low-squeak material for medical devices," Wendy Johnson, Medical Marketing Manager, told PlasticsToday. "The low squeak performance is related to the low coefficient of friction and the tribological additive formulation," she explained.
Hostaform MT SlideX POM is described as a competitive alternative to other high-performance, tribologically modified compounds. In addition to the lower coefficient of friction compared with alternative materials, it comes with the Celanese medical technology (MT) service package. This results in the potential to reduce costs by removing design constraints and simplifying material combinations in complex devices.