Polymer materials, including plastics, are found in just about everything these days. The new options and composites in polymers make them a cost-effective option to replace metals and other materials, including wood, that may be more costly to use or not offer the same durability and resistance to corrosion, rot or other environmental agents.
With plastics taking on more of an advanced role in all types of components, it is essential to have effective methods for polymer testing to ensure the material has the physical properties needed to be a safe, reliable and effective choice for the specific use. It is also essential for manufacturer liability, which is an ever increasing consideration with consumer products.
By using polymer testing on raw materials used in composites and in composites and plastics after production, it is possible to ensure that the material is free from contaminants that may ultimately make the polymer unsuitable for use. This allows the manufacturer to be sure that the polymer meets all industry standards, regulations and requirements for a particular use.
Another very important aspect of polymer testing to the manufacturers is the ability to assess and develop a profile for changes to a polymer that lead to increased desirable characteristics.
By being able to test the end product after changing the additives or modifying a formula a plastics producer can work towards a new material while eliminating additives or combinations that do not provide the desired improvement in performance.
The tests will be carefully selected to measure the specific properties of the polymer that the company wishes to study. Different tests can measure everything from degradation rate to crystallinity to ensure the material will remain stable. Additionally, when a product does not meet the expectations, a product failure analysis can provide pinpoint answers to why there was a problem.
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