Syensqo’s Ixef® PARA shapes innovative surfing fin by Kohola Flow Tech

The cutting-edge, glass-reinforced polymer enhances rigidity, aesthetics, and eco-friendliness of the surfboard fin

Brussels, March 27, 2024 - Syensqo’s Ixef® polyaryl amide (PARA) resin is used by Drake Plastics for molding the innovative Kohola FlowTech 1 Single Fin that enhances the flow control and efficient forward motion of surfboards to deliver longer and faster rides. The patented design of Kohola’s unique fins mimics the flippers of humpback whales. The efficiency of the injection molding process helped to achieve a manufacturing waste reduction of up to 30% compared to conventional fins produced with other techniques.

For the new FlowTech 1 Single Fin, the partners selected Ixef® PARA 1022, a 50% glass fiber reinforced compound that exhibits very high strength and rigidity, outstanding surface gloss and excellent creep resistance.

“We are very pleased to provide a thermoplastic compound that helps Kohola bring a more sustainable solution to the surfing industry with no compromises in product performance, aesthetics or durability,” states Meghan Powers, Global Marketing Manager for Syensqo’s Specialty Polymers business. “Indeed, unlike traditionally used subtractive manufacturing processes, using Ixef® PARA 1022 (a 50% glass fiber reinforced compound that exhibits very high strength and rigidity, outstanding surface gloss and excellent creep resistance) enables our customers to improve material usage efficiency as well as, waste and recycling challenges.''

“Our longboard fins require a material that supports the dynamic maneuverability and minimized resistance enabled by the natural whale pattern design, which improves flow control by cutting through turbulences and reducing side-to-side wobbling for a more stable forward ride as well as safer, tighter turns,” explains David E. Shormann, founder of Kohola Flow Tech company. “Apart from offering the mechanical characteristics to meet those needs, extensive testing showed that Syensqo’s Ixef® PARA also ensures the durability to handle marine conditions with extensive exposure to sun and saltwater.”

Bryan Quance, Sales & Applications Engineer at Drake Plastics, adds: “The new Kohola fins are a game changer in the surfboard market. By replacing a phenolic thermoset material with Ixef® PARA and taking full advantage of the injection molding process, we arrived at a high-performing high-end product with better resource efficiency and superior finish straight from the mold, eliminating the time and cost for secondary trimming and polishing.”

Following the success of the FlowTech 1 Single Fin, Kohola is also considering to specify Ixef® PARA for the company’s advanced FlowTech 3 Thruster Set. This new design will further maximize drive and stability through turns with controlled release for the ultimate combination of speed, power and flow when surfing. In addition, the patented fin design has potential in other markets where wing-like structures are used, from ceiling fans and aircraft to marine propellers.

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Notes for editors

About Syensqo
Syensqo is a science company developing groundbreaking solutions that enhance the way we live, work, travel and play. Inspired by the scientific councils which Ernest Solvay initiated in 1911, we bring great minds together to push the limits of science and innovation for the benefit of our customers, with a diverse, global team of more than 13,000 associates in 30 countries.

Our solutions contribute to safer, cleaner, and more sustainable products found in homes, food and consumer goods, planes, cars, batteries, smart devices and healthcare applications. Our innovation power enables us to deliver on the ambition of a circular economy and explore breakthrough technologies that advance humanity.

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About Drake Plastics Ltd. Co.
Drake Plastics Ltd. Co., a Syensqo-approved Torlon® PAI processor, and Ixef® PARA, Ketaspire® PEEK, Ryton® PPS and Avaspire® PAEK extruder and injection molder, offers over 25 years of industry-leading experience, delivering unmatched capabilities and competence in extruding, injection molding, post-processing and machining ultra high-performance polymers.

About Kohola Flow Tech
Kohola Flow Tech was born on Oahu's North Shore, known to surfers worldwide as "the proving grounds." Our mission is to share the joy of surfing through unique and proven designs, all for the glory of God. We are committed to maximizing performance while minimizing environmental impact through design and testing, material selection and manufacturing techniques.

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Yahtanhoya Moreno
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