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Polyethylene is the most used material worldwide. Polyethylene belongs to the thermoplastics, which means it becomes mouldable after heating it. As soon as the material has cooled, it takes a solid form again. This makes polyethylene very suitable for making various products.
The mechanical and chemical features of polyethylene are depending on the density. There are several types of polyethylene, but for the vacuum forming we mostly use PE wit a high density.
HDPE is used a lot because of it’s favourable mechanical properties over a wide temperature range and it is also good to form and edit. Furthermore, the water intake is very low and it is resistant to many solvents. HDPE does have a great shrink factor and thus should be duly taken into account during the designing, in relation to abnormalities in the dimensions and the shape of the final product.
Versions of polyethylene
Here is also the possibility to combine PE with another plastic to unite favourable features of several plastic products . This can be in a mix or as two layers in a plastic plate in case of vacuum forming. We can also add tallow to increase the stability of Polyethylene.
By melting Polyethylene it can be used for several applications, such as storage boxes, coverings, caps, waste containers, plastic bottles and packaging film for food and beverages.
The gluing of Polyethylene is very difficult and can only be done preceded by a lengthy pre-treatment. However, welding is much simpler and is mainly applied. Welding with Polystyrene (PS) is also an option.