When we say plastics, we are pertaining to organic polymers (synthetic or natural) of high relative molecular mass, mixed with other substances.
Plastics are made of polymeric substances, but not all polymers are plastics.
Plastics are made of polymeric substances (chemicals). These are organic polymers of high molecular mass. Raw materials such as crude oil, natural gas and coal are used to prepare plastics. Plastics are made from polymeric resin, often mixed with additives to enhance their colour and shine.
Characteristics of plastics:
Plastic in insulations for wires
- They are poor conductors of electricity, so they are used in insulations for wires, switches, etc.
- The heat resistance is low because they have low thermal conductivity, and hence they melt when heated.
- They are easy to process and flexible to handle.
- Plastics are lightweight compared to other materials such as glass, metals, ceramics etc.
- The toughness or the tensile strength of plastic materials is low compared to metals and alloys.
- Plastics can be coloured as per wishes and can be moulded into different shapes.
- Plastics are non-reactive to chemicals.
- They are inexpensive compared to metals.
Uses of Plastics:
Uses of plastics
The general uses of plastics are durable, cost-effective, used in the construction industry, in flooring, roofing etc. Some of the plastics are degradable in nature. The most commonly used plastics and their uses are
- Polypropylene: Used in making straws, kettles, clothing, packing tape, bottle caps etc.
- Polyvinyl Chloride: They are used in making pipes, flooring, cables, cleaning solutions, water bottles etc.
- Low-density Polyethylene: They are used in making computer hardware covers, laundry bags, trays etc.
- High-density Polyethylene: They are used in freezer bags, protective helmets, insulations etc.
- Polyethylene Terephthalate: They are used in making soft drink bottles, ready meal trays, first aid blankets etc.
'Plasticity' is the word that describes the property, feature and attributes to a structure that would not break. Plasticity describes whether a polymer would survive the temperature and pressure during the moulding process.