What are polymer additives?

Polymer additives are one of the essential materials used for polyvinyl chloride and polyolefins to add special properties and longer life to plastic.

Types of polymer additives:

• Hindered phenol type antioxidants
Hindered phenols are extensive scavengers which help in prevention of thermal degradation of polymeric and organic materials. They show synergistic effects when used with phosphites, thioethers and light stabilizers.

• Phosphites
Phosphites are known for the excellent properties like masking agents, peroxide decomposers, and halogen acceptors. The feature of Phosphites includes providing good heat stability, color stability, process stability and weather-ability to polymers.

• UV Absorbers
As the name suggests, UV absorbers turn photochemical energy of light into harmless heat and helps to prevent polymers from degradation due to UV rays. UV absorbers work best when used with HALS (Hindered Amine Light Stabilizer).

• Flame retardants
Flame retardants are additives which reduce flammability and are usually used to make plastic utilizable electronic equipment parts or construction materials. They act as a key component in manufacturing of plastic as they avoid devastating impact of fire on human, property and environment.

• Lubricants
These polymer additives improve the fluidity of internal and external polymers during the production process.

• Clarifiers or nucleating agents
Clarifiers provide crystallinity to the plastic. Crystallinity refers to the degree of structural order in a solid. Higher the degree of crystallinity means higher mechanical properties such as density, transparency and hardness of plastic.

• Metal deactivators
The plastic used for wires and cables has metal deactivator additives to prevent oxidative degradation caused by metals such as copper and other metals chelating them.

These are just few types of additives, there is a multitude of polymer additivespolymer additives that are added to commercial polymer to enhance its performance and achieve various other features.