PEEK custom parts and PEEK fasteners such as screws, hex heads, hex nuts, set screws, flat washers and threaded studs are used in a wide range of industries.These include semiconductor manufacturing equipment, oil and gas, telecommunications, medical equipment and medical parts for implantation in the human body. It is also used widely in the semiconductor equipment manufacturing industry, and the electronics and food processing industries. PEEK stands for polyetheretherketone.
Properties of Polyetheretherketone
Excellent chemical resistance
Excellent insulating properties (dielectric properties/nonconducting)
94 V-0 flammability rating
Excellent hydrolysis resistance. Can be exposed to high pressure water and steam for long periods without absorbing water.
Good anti-magnetic properties
Good adiabatic performance
Strength and stiffness comparable to some metals
FDA and USDA approved
Excellent bearing and wear resistance
High mechanical strength, stiffness and creep resistance over a wide temperature range
Telecommunications and Electronics
The consumer electronics uses PEEK screws, PEEK fasteners and per print PEEK parts to take advantage of the material’s dielectric properties (non-conducting, i.e. insulating). Parts made from the material are also light in weight and have cost advantages over metal screws. Mobile phones over the worldare made using PEEK fasteners. Nintendo uses PEEK screws in their Gameboy.® Sony uses PEEK fasteners in their Playstation® portable device.
The automotive industry uses PEEK fasteners in cars because they are chemically resistant and light weight. It is lighter when compared to metals traditionally used to build cars. Fuel efficiency is enhanced by lighter weight vehicles. Also, PEEK fasteners and custom parts exhibit anti-magnetic and good dielectric properties. PEEK is 94-V0 rated so it does not burn and there is no out-gassing.
Ferrari Testarosa Uses Peek Custom Parts
The distributor rotator arms in the Ferrari Testarosa are made of PEEK with four metal inserts. This part rotates up to 3500 rpm. Uneven road surfaces and engine vibrations also cause additional stress. And there is heat of up to 248°F (120°C.) which is conducted from the engine to the rotator arm. Other automotive parts include brake components, seals and thrush washers.
In medicine, PEEK is considered an advanced biomaterial. PEEK screws are used in medical implants for their anti-corrosive properties. It has excellent hydrolysis resistance, meaning that it can be exposed to high pressure water and steam without absorbing water. PEEK is a low-out-gassing and high purity material. These factors make it ideal for medical applications. Spinal fusion devices and reinforcing rods are examples of the medical use of PEEK. It is also widely used for medical instruments parts.
Semi-conductor Equipment Manufactures
Semi-conductor manufacturers use equipment made with PEEK screws and other fasteners. This is especially true in wet benches. Silicon wafers are made into chips through a photolithography process. Chip manufacturers use hydrofluoric acid, an extremely corrosive substance that will quickly eat through metals. Hence the use of PEEK screws and custom parts. It is one of the most chemically resistant plastic materials. Also the low-out gassing characteristic of PEEK and its high purity make it ideal for producing ICUs. PEEK is additionally used to make manifolds for semiconductor production equipment and to manufacture wafer carriers for semi-conductor cleaning equipment.
Oil and Gas
PEEK fasteners and custom PEEK parts are also used in the Oil and Gas Industry for critical machinery. These benefit from PEEK’s chemical resistance and excellent insulating properties (dielectric). However, the oil and gas industry benefits from the good adiabatic performance of PEEK. That is change occurring within a system as a result of transfer of energy to or from the system in the form of work only as no heat is transferred.
Aircraft manufacturers have turned to PEEK to meet the annual fuel cost savings goals of aircraft operators. It is 70% lighter than steel. With a density of 1.3 grams per cubic centimeter, the strength and stiffness of fiber reinforced PEEK compares favorably with the metal traditionally used to build aircraft. As mentioned above, PEEK has a 94-V0 flammability rating. Composite PEEK parts are chemically resistant to service fluids commonly used in the aviation industry unlike traditional aircraft metals such as aluminum. These include jet fuel, hydraulic fluid, de-icing solution, salt, and steam water.
PEEK is FDA and EFSA approved and thus meets the most stringent food contact material requirements. These including safety, quality and regulatory compliance. It is excellent for bearing and wear applications from 115°-160°C. PEEK resists a wide range of aggressive, hot chemicals and cleaning solutions. It demonstrates high mechanical strength, stiffness and creep resistance over a wide temperature range. It tolerates exposure to steam and to a wide variety of chemicals under pressure. PEEK is used in oven and hot process parts. The material comes in a number of grades to meet the challenges of these industries.