Showing posts with label TPER. Show all posts
Showing posts with label TPER. Show all posts

Friday, September 24, 2021

What is Thermoplastic Elastomer Rubber? TPER, TPO, and TPV?

Understanding the difference between TPER and TPV is the key to writing more robust specifications for chemical-resistant waterstop. The key is in the crosslinking of the rubber phase. Polymers are chemical compounds formed by multiple structural units called monomers.

In the laboratory, forming polymers from monomers is called polymerization and is often so complex that it has to be initiated or sustained by heat, pressure, or a catalyst. Synthetic polymers produce plastics, synthetic fibers, and synthetic rubber.

Polymers come in different forms and have certain qualities (strength, elasticity, resistance to solvents, and temperature extremes), achieved through vulcanization, where individual polymer molecules form crosslinks.

The vulcanization of polymers leads to springy rubber molecules that can become locked together to a greater or lesser extent. These molecules form rubber or elastomers. The end material is stronger, much more durable, and more resistant to chemicals.



Elastomers are amorphous polymers, the result of crosslinking rubber molecules through vulcanization.

An elastomer can exist in two states:

• Uncured elastomers are a gelatinous mass with the consistency of chewing gum in its natural state.

• Cured elastomers (i.e., vulcanized elastomers) are rubber-like materials that can be stretched to twice their original length. Thanks to their crosslinks, they return to most of their original length when released.



Plastic or thermoplastic polymers consist of long polymer molecules that are not linked to each other, i.e.; they have no crosslinks. They can generally go through many melt/freeze cycles without suffering chemical change.

Thermoplastics include polyethylene, polypropylene, polystyrene, polyester, polyvinyl chloride, acrylics, nylons, and polyurethanes.

Fundamental differences exist between thermoplastic polymers and thermoset rubber. Thermoset rubber generally demonstrates a better elastic behavior and a better memory than a thermoplastic material. They are also better suited to high-temperature applications. Thermoset rubber is not easily recyclable like thermoplastic, which can be melted and reshaped.



Thermoset rubber refers to a range of elastomers that vulcanize to a more robust form through the addition of energy (heat or irradiation). The added power and catalysts cause the molecular chains to link into a rigid, 3D structure. However, once vulcanized, they cannot be melted and reshaped.

Important thermosets include phenolics, urea, melamine, epoxies, polyesters, silicones, rubbers, and polyurethanes.



Thermoplastic elastomers (TPERs) are a diverse family of rubber-like compound materials that combine the functional performance and properties of conventional thermoset rubbers with the processability of plastics. TPERs permit the fabrication of rubber-like products with the ability to be reshaped or reformed with the application of heat.



Thermoplastic vulcanizates (TPVs) belong to the thermoplastic elastomer (TPER) family. TPVs are chemically crosslinked rubber within a thermoplastic polymer phase.

The level of vulcanization (partial versus full) has an impact on the properties of the TPV. A fully vulcanized TPV demonstrates improved performance than a partially or non-vulcanized one (thermoplastic polyolefin or TPO).

TPVs have outstanding properties, including excellent elastic recovery, high-temperature resistance, and chemical resistance.

A TPV molecule — Crosslinked rubber phase encased in a thermoplastic matrix.


Friday, September 23, 2011

TPE and TPV... My Definition

TPEs and TPVs are such niche items that I seriously doubt that you'll ever find them listed in a printed dictionary or encyclopedia. Therefore, I decided to put my definiton on the Web for all to use as needed. 

1)       TPE and TPV defined:
a)         Thermoplastic Elastomeric Rubber (TPE [sometimes referred to as TPER]) — An alloy of rubber and plastic usually that bridges the price/performance gap of the two parent materials. TPEs have many of the physical properties and characteristics of rubber, but process like plastics.
b)        Thermoplastic Vulcanizate Rubber (TPV) — Same as a TPE, but the rubber phase of the product is vulcanized (or cross-linked), which provides the finished elastomer with higher chemical resistance and substantially better mechanical properties.
c)         (From Handbook of Thermoplastic Elastomers by Benjamin M. Walker and Dr. Charles P. Rader.)  TPEs first appeared as commercial entities during the late 1950s, with the introduction of thermoplastic polyurethane elastomers by both B. F. Goodrich and Mobay Chemical. This was followed by the production of styrene butadiene and styrene isoprene block copolymers by the Shell Chemical Company during the middle and late 1960s. a significant innovation in the TPE field was the commercial introduction of copolyester block copolymers by the Du Pont Company during the 1970s, which was followed by the introduction of a group of rubber-plastic blends — primarily polypropylene and EPDM rubber — by the Uniroyal Chemical Company. The 1980s saw  introduction of elastomeric alloy thermoplastic vulcanizates (TPVs), by the Monsanto Chemical Company in 1981, and elastomeric alloy melt processible rubbers (MPRs), by the Du Pont Company in 1985. The Monsanto TPV (now Santoprene by ExxonMobil), based upon a unique process of dynamic vulcanization, consists of a two-phase system — a finely divided dispersion of a highly vulcanized rubber phase in a continuous phase of polyolefin.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

"We Contain More" Magazine, Volume 1, Number 2, Now On-line

The newest issue of "We Contain More" is now posted on-line. This issue covers the differences between TPEs and TPVs, and previews a new product for secondary containment, concrete cold joints. Featured project is Ruwais Refinery in the UAE. As always, we appreciate your readership, and consider it our responsibility to the industry to educate and inform.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

New Retrofit Waterstop Profile Accommodates Very Large Joint Movements

JP Specialties, Inc. has developed a new Earth Shield® waterstop product specifically designed to accommodate large shear movements, such as tank ring foundations subjected to settlement. The JP621L Retrofit Waterstop System is chemically and mechanically adhered to the existing concrete using one of our chemical resistant, novolac epoxies (VEN500 or VEN1000), stainless steel batten bar, and stainless steel anchor bolts. The waterstop profile is combed along the fastening leg, which facilitates the epoxy bonding to the profile. The embedded waterstop leg has two large polymer dams which are designed to create a torturous fluid path and simultaneously perform as anchor points for the new concrete to bond to. The JP621L profile has a large, tear-web centerbulb that can move greater than five inches without deformation of the waterstops main body. (The thin diaphragm, or "tear-web", ruptures under shear stress, allowing the "U-bulb" to move freely for its entire length when installed in an open joint.) JP621L Retrofit Waterstop can be heat welded to a continuous, fluid-tight barrier, like all our Earth Shield® waterstop profiles, and can be joined to our baseseal (or rearguard) profiles for intersecting joints.

Friday, November 03, 2006

JP636 Waterstop Expansion Joint

Movie file illustrates the proper placement of Earth Shield® (part no. JP636 as manufactured by JP Specialties, Inc.) ribbed centerbulb waterstop in a concrete expansion joint. 3-D orbit point isometric. For help with your specific waterstop application, consult with JP Specialties technical sales & engineering staff.

Thursday, November 02, 2006