Thermoplastic Elastomers; More Applications for Lesser Cost

Among the major factors for consideration in the thermoplastic industry is having a good evaluation of the cost of production versus the expected performance. Thermoplastic elastomers have gained popularity in industry due to their unique set of characteristics. They exhibit rubber material traits and can be processed through melting and thermoplastic production. This second attribute allows for easier designing and manipulation that are not available in rubber manufacturing. TPE’s have both crystalline and amorphous structures within them.

thermoplastic elastomers

thermoplastic elastomers


In chemical operation, the crystalline side is responsible for thermoplastic attributes while the amorphous links provide for elastomeric characteristics. In technical jargon, crystalline area creates the hardness while amorphous is soft phase.

 The traits associated with the hard stage or the plastic include tensile and tear strength, resistance to chemicals and fluids and better adhesion properties to other inks and adhesives. Elastomeric traits include lower temperature levels, better flexibility and compression.

Rating /classification

The main determinant of which type of thermoplastic elastomers to use should be guided by the target application. A cost benefit analysis should also be done but only after carefully looking through your performance requirements.

Classification criteria

  • Operating temperatures- Is a very critical consideration because it will only serve in such temperatures as will hold the elastomeric properties and perform optimally. Various types will have variable operating temperatures and they should always be considered before use.
  • Chemical resistance- During operation, the material could be exposed to chemicals such as acids, alkalis, lubricants and these may have effect on them. The chemical effect can cause changes in volume, weight or alter physical and chemical properties of the product. During purchase, determine the exposure to these solvents or liquids during use and conduct proper analysis.
  • Hardness- The total force when exposed to before break and even the tensile strength are also good considerations depending on usage.
  • Resistance to tear is also very important-  Most applications especially in the motor vehicle industry have wear and tear in the engine.
  • Material response to compression forces and action on release of force- The ability to resist this compressive force without deformation occurring. This process is also affected by duration of exposure, prevailing temperatures and presence of chemicals.
  • Other important factors of thermoplastic elastomers include peeling characteristics and cohesive/ adhesive bonds failure.

With advanced innovation in industry, custom thermoplastic elastomers can be produced to enable the user compliance with the temperature requirements of their application. The footwear industry requires a blend of toughness in use in terms of resilience and abrasion resistance while maintaing the comfort of the user. This is easily achieved through these products.

Specialty thermoplastic elastomers such as the vinyl-based elastomers are also available for applications in motor industry, components of door seals requiring elastomeric action and in exposed windows to minimize the effects of fluctuating weather.

Thermoplastic elastomers compounding is done to improve the properties of the resulting product. S&E specialty polymers are able to offer great compounding solutions and can be made as per the user needs. In production, better consistency has been achieved using the state of art equipment and laboratory and your thermoplastics needs will be covered. Visit

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