The growing demand for PVC compounds

Published: 27th October 2009
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VC compounds are highly versatile and can be put to numerous uses in different industry segments. One can use the rigid profile PVC compounds to manufacture high end dairy hoses, for instance. But before we go any further, we need to be clear about polyvinyl chloride.

Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) is polymer plastic that is widely used in industries such as construction, transport, medical applications, consumer goods, packaging, and the food and beverages industry, to mention a few sectors. While making PVC, fossil fuels are cracked to produce ethylene which is then combined with chlorine to make vinyl chloride. The vinyl chloride is polymerized to make PVC. Next, the PVC is mixed with a large number of additives to plasticize it and make it more flexible and give it other desirable properties. For extended life applications and to make it suitable for being used in the construction industry, heavy metal stabilizers are added to the PVC.

One can obtain PVC in thousands of different formulations and configurations. A large percentage of the PVC compounds manufactured find applications in the food and beverage industry. These compounds are used in the fabrication of milk hoses and for agricultural hosing. The reasons behind the widespread use of PVC compounds in this industry segment are not hard to identify. PVC compounds are relatively cheap and can be adapted to many different flexible applications quite easily. The PVC hoses and tubes being used in the food industry need to be approved by the FDA beforehand, to ensure that the interests of the consumers are in no way jeopardized.

There are different types of PVC compounds to cater to a growing demand from different sectors. There are the soft PVC compounds which are lead free and perfect for extrusion. These soft PVC compounds are used to manufacture flexible tubes, flexible hoses, and food approved hoses and pipes. The manufacturers of soft PVC compounds ensure that the specific gravity, hardness, tensile strength, elongation, and thermal stability are according to what is needed for the various applications. The exact requirements of each and every customer vary, and a reputed manufacturer comes with the necessary experience and expertise to cater to this demand.

Then, there are the rigid profile PVC compounds that are specifically used for the production of rigid and semi rigid extruded products for various applications and industries. This type of PVC compounds are used to manufacture PVC shrink and sheets, helix reinforced hoses, and moldings and trim boards.

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