Specialty Polymers and Compounds
Delivering versatile solutions for the most demanding applications
Polymers are large molecules consisting of a repeating series of linked smaller molecules, called monomers. Synthetic polymers are generally made from petroleum, and yield a range of plastic materials such as polyethylene, rubber and nylon. Polymers derived from two or more different monomers are known as copolymers.
Structurally, a polymer’s linked monomers can form linear, branched, crosslinked or networked chains. Most linear and branched polymers are thermoplastic, meaning they soften when heated and harden when cooled, while networked and most crosslinked polymers are thermosets, which become irreversibly hardened when cured. Polymers can be processed in various ways, including extrusion and injection molding, and also modified or compounded – mixed together with additives – to achieve particular desirable performance attributes.
Uses and benefits
Specialty polymers of all kinds are widely used in nearly every industry in a variety of materials and applications, including ones with especially demanding requirements. Extremely versatile, polymers’ structures give them unique properties that can be specially formulated and engineered for many specific uses, such as:
- Packaging – enabling tough but lightweight bags, blisters, cups, lids, pouches, adhesive films and other materials for a wide range of food and beverage, cosmetic and medical and pharmaceutical packaging
- Wire and cable – technology-driven solutions with broadest portfolio of jacketing and insulation compounds for power, telecommunications, flame retardant and specialty applications
- Many more uses – including ceramics, lighting and metalworking