New extra-rigid ZOTEK® F OSU foam promises weight savings of up to 70% for aircraft interiors

  • Multiple applications in aircraft interiors, replacing solid thermoplastic and silicon components
  • Substantial benefits in soft-touch applications versus current materials

Zotefoams, a world leader in cellular materials technology, will premiere its latest closed cell OSU grade foam, ZOTEK® F OSU XR, at this year’s AIX 2020 show as the company extends its High-Performance Product (HPP) line.

Zotefoams’ latest polyvinylidene fluoride (PVDF) foam, ZOTEK F XR, is an extra-rigid closed cell crosslinked foam available in densities of 120 and 150kg/m3. Complementing the flexible, semi-rigid and rigid grades already available in the ZOTEK F OSU range, the introduction of XR significantly extends Zotefoams’ scope of application in aircraft interiors: ZOTEK F is already used extensively by leading aircraft manufacturers for window seals, soft-touch trim, close-outs, insulation, carpet underlay and environmental control systems due to its light weight, ease of processing and its frequent suitability to replace composite materials. The material also meets all relevant aviation standards, offering outstanding fire, smoke and toxicity (FST) ratings.

“With the introduction of the XR grade, we are extending the weight-saving benefits of the ZOTEK F OSU range to locations such as the interior of seat pods, stowage lockers, rigid armrests and tray tables, reducing weight by as much as 70% on a like-for-like basis,” says James Bridges, Director of High-Performance Products at Zotefoams.

Crucially, grades of ZOTEK F can be laminated together to create a single material that is rigid on one side and soft/flexible on the other and can be formed into curves and complex shapes, opening up opportunities for design teams looking to bring individuality and extra comfort to cabin interiors. With the carbon footprint of air travel firmly in the spotlight, the potential weight savings achievable by replacing solid thermoplastic and silicon components with ZOTEK F are particularly attractive.

Also in demand for their weight-saving properties are materials from Zotefoams’ AZOTE® polyethylene foams range. At just 15kg/m3, MP15FR is the lightest OEM-approved FR grade aviation foam, while LD24FR is the market-leading foam for aircraft seating. The AZOTE range includes conductive and static dissipative grades compatible with sensitive electronic components. Applications include ducting, seals, insulation, seat padding and support and buoyancy aids.

Both AZOTE and ZOTEK are manufactured via a unique process that produces foams with inherently low odour levels and remarkably consistent closed cell structure, characteristics that make the foam exceptionally easy to fabricate via any number of processes including thermoforming, compression moulding, water jet, thermal bonding and lamination.

* ZOTEK F features in this year’s Crystal Cabin Awards as part of the submission by MGR Foamtex. Its MGRSoftWall® NextGen is a major innovation to a novel and highly successful product.  Developed by MGR Foamtex Ltd in association with Zotefoams plc, the revolutionary dual-density foam has reduced the weight of these ‘soft to touch’ cabin panels by up to 60%, translating to savings of up to 100kg per aircraft.

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