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Other names
Except where otherwise noted, data are given for materials in their standard state (at 25 °C [77 °F], 100 kPa).

Perfluoropolyether (PFPE) is a type of liquid lubricant that has been used in the aerospace industry for over 30 years.[2] The main properties of PFPE are being temperature resistant between -58 °C (215 K) and 257 °C (530 K) (depending on specific composites), having very low outgassing compared to other fluids (vapour pressure of ) and having a dielectric strength of around 15.7 MV/m.[3]

Perfluoropolyether consists of a polymer chain in which monomers consisting of perfluoro-alkyl groups are joined by ether linkages. The bonds between carbon and oxygen or fluorine are strong.[4]

The thermal and chemical stability of PFPE along with a vapor-liquid equilibrium of 230 °C when mixed with the right composites make it a suitable candidate for vapor phase soldering technologies.[5]


It's been developed in early 1960s at request of USAF with a requirement to be non-reacting with liquid and gaseous oxygen (O2).[6]


Perfluoropolyether can be synthesized from tetrafluoroethylene or hexafluoropropylene.[4]


PFPE is chemically inert to many acids and oxidants (like fuming sulfuric acid (oleum, SO3), chlorine gas, oxygen) and solvents, etc..

PFPE is non-toxic under normal conditions, nonflammable, and exhibit unusually high load carry capabilities.[6][1] PFPE can withstand gamma ray degradation.[6]

Electrical resistivity is 1014 ohm/cm (20 °C (68 °F))[6]


Generally PFPE may be used as lubricant in all sorts of bearing, plug valves, gaskets, chains, and joint bearing applications, where oxygen inertness of a material is a requirement.[6][1] Examples include aircraft fuel systems, mechanical components of devices used in airspace, deep space or high vacuum and at cryogenic temperatures.[6]

PFPE may be used in mold release agent for plastic injection molding.[6]

As top coating lubricant on computer disc drives and Scanning Electron Microscope[6][1]

As anti-galling compounds.[6]

As fluid medium in ferrofluidic seals.[6]

Semiconductor industry

In the semiconductor industry, PFPE may be used as a vacuum grease or in plasma etching equipment, or for robots used in seminconductor wafer handling, clean rooms, and other commercial environments.[6]

See also

  • Krytox, a PFPE-based lubricant


  1. ^ a b c d Ash, Michael (2004). Handbook of green chemicals. Irene Ash (2 ed.). Endicott, NY: Synapse Information Resources. ISBN 978-1-934764-29-9. OCLC 747426845.
  2. ^ Bradley Shogrin (August 1995). "Spontaneous Dewetting of a Perfluoropolyether" (PDF). National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Retrieved 2017. {{cite journal}}: Cite journal requires |journal= (help)
  3. ^ "Fomblin® PFPE Lubricants".
  4. ^ a b Fluorochemie. "Brief Introduction of PFPE Synthesis Methods". Fuzhou Topda New Material Co., Ltd. Retrieved 2022.
  5. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2021-02-27. Retrieved .{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  6. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "HUSKEY Specialty lubricants" (PDF). HUSK-ITT Corporation.

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