LyondellBasell Launch New Polyethylene Resin for Flexible Packaging Applications

LyondellBasell Industries today announced the commercial launch of a new polyethylene (PE) resin for potential use in a wide range of customer blown film applications. The new Lupolen GX 4081 grade features a superior balance of mechanical properties, and a unique combination of stiffness and toughness that offers significant downgauging potential - up to double digits - for numerous flexible packaging applications.

Produced using LyondellBasell's Spherilene gas phase process technology that employs a unique catalysis system, the Lupolen GX 4081 resin exhibits a melt flow rate of 1.4 g/10min and a density of 0.935 g/cm³. Tests have shown that films produced with Lupolen GX 4081 resins can achieve a dart drop impact of 330 grams, measured on 50µm film. "This high level of toughness represents a new benchmark in performance for medium density PE used in film applications," said Roland Andernach, Technical Service and Application Development Manager at LyondellBasell.

Material savings
"Thanks to the expertise of our researchers, we've developed a high-performance PE using the Spherilene process technology which shows smooth processability and a broad processing window on our blown film processing lines," said Andernach. "Lupolen GX 4081 resins can be easily blended with standard LDPEs. The application potential for Lupolen GX 4081 resins is wide, ranging from agricultural and industrial film to food packaging film."

Mechanical tests show that film produced out of Lupolen GX 4081 resins achieve well balanced mechanical properties in machine and cross direction. "Our customers can take further advantage of improved optical properties," said Andernach. "According to our tests of film made on our blown film extrusion line, the haze value could be reduced by about half compared to conventional MDPE film resins."

Film produced using the new Lupolen GX 4081 resin shows a low coefficient of friction (CoF), offering easy processability on film conversion equipment without the need for slipping and antiblocking agents. The new grade also exhibits good bubble stability and a low gel level.

Lupolen GX 4081 resins are now available for market introduction and will be produced on a commercial scale in LyondellBasell's European Spherilene process plants.

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