Polyetherketones (PEK for short) are polymers whose molecular backbone contain alternating ketone (R-CO-R) and Ether (R-O-R) functionalities. The most common are Polyaryletherketones (PAEK), in which there is an aryl group linked in the (1,4)-position between each of the functional groups. The backbone, which is thus very rigid, gives the materials very high glass transition and melting temperatures compared to other plastics.
The most common of these high-temperature resistant materials is polyetheretherketone (PEEK).
Other types of polyetherketone are:
Space and aviation: aircraft parts (fins, wing flaps, nose caps, seats). Replacements for metal parts, also in the military field.
Machinery and automotive industry: high-performance molded parts such as bearing cages, gears, sealing rings, valve spring retainers, impellers. Coatings when high resistance to temperatures above 200 °C is required. Coatings made of PEEK or PEK, for example, are suitable for applications up to 230 °C (450 °F).
PEK has a high temperature resistance. It is also characterized by high wear resistance. In addition, polyetherketones are highly resistant to chemicals: They are resistant to non-oxidizing acids, grease, lubricants, water vapor, hot water, and concentrated alkalis.