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Advanced Radiation Processing
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Polymer Modification

Polymer Modification

Electron Beam and Gamma Ray processing are valuable resources for polymer modification by improving properties over non-irradiated polymers and offering significant advantages over other methods of modification.
Sterigenics Advanced Applications can provide processing for:
Formed parts
Injection-molded, blow-molded or extruded parts made from a range of polymer materials (including PE, PVC, EVA, EPDM, SBR, natural rubber, and other polymers) may be crosslinked with radiation to improve such properties as their temperature rating, mechanical properties, environmental stress crack resistance (ESCR), and solvent resistance or other properties. Gaskets, seals, PPTC devices, tubing, and film sheets are examples of parts made from the above materials that may be improved with radiation processing.
Engineering polymers
New radiation crosslinkable formulations of polyamide (PA), i.e. nylon, and polybutyleneterephthalate (PBT) are now available for high-temperature polymer modification applications,such as under-hood automotive components and electrical connectors. and high dielectric strength applications, such as components in high voltage breakers. The base materials are enabled by crosslinking promoters, and this technique can be used with other engineering polymers.
Bulk polymers
Irradiation of bulk polymer resins and powders can be used to modify their molecular weights and consequently their properties. For example, irradiation of cellulose derivatives will lower their molecular weight and can be used to tailor viscosity. Irradiation of selected polyethylenes will increase their molecular weights and enhance melt strength properties valuable during forming.
Pipe and tubing
Radiation cross-linking of polyethylene water or natural gas supply piping allows increased operating temperature and enhances mechanical properties.
Heat-shrinkable products
Two entire industries have benefited from polymer modification using electron beamtechnology: heat shrinkable films for packaging and heat-shrinkable connectors for electricalconnections. Both are produced by taking advantage of a "memory effect" imparted through theuse of electron beam processing.
More than just radiation processing...
Often, more than just radiation dose is needed to deliver the final properties to achieve the desired polymer modifications. Sterigenics Advanced Applications, with nearly 40 years of experience and professionals in the fields of industrial radiation processing, understands this, and works closely with our customers to provide the complete solution - not just the radiation.

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