Preparation and properties of a novel, high-performance polyether ether ketone fabric

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In this study, polyether ether ketone (PEEK) fibers were produced by melt spinning method and woven to form fabrics. Several characterization tests were conducted with fiber tensile testing machine, scanning electron microscope, and differential scanning calorimeter to investigate the basic properties of PEEK fibers. Electric fabric strength, thermal performance, and corrosion resistance of PEEK fabric were also investigated. The commercial samples of NomexIIIA (imported) and Aramid1313 fabrics (made in China) were selected as control groups to evaluate the performance of developed fabrics. The results indicate that the PEEK fabrics have higher breaking strength, better corrosion resistance, and greater thermal stability than the other two commercial fabrics in the control group. The total friction of the PEEK fabric reached 30,000 times when two separate yarns in fabric were broken completely, and the breaking strength was in the range of 830–1422 N. The surface of PEEK fibers remained smooth, and there was no deformation after handling by 30% sodium hydroxide and 36% hydrochloric acid for 48 h; additionally, there was no weight loss. The melting point of PEEK fabric was 342.89°C, and it lost 5% of its weight at 574°C. The research shows that as a novel high-performance textile, PEEK fabrics with a long service temperature of 260°C have significant advantages in the improvement of corrosion resistance and mechanical properties of textiles, especially enhancing the stability under high-concentration alkaline environment. This work can provide novel avenues for the development of high-performance fibers and products with applications in special harsh environments.

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