Difference between revisions of "Polyethylene"

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[[File:2004.2110-SC185598.jpg|thumb|'''MFA Acc. #:''' 2004.2110]]
 
[[File:2004.2110-SC185598.jpg|thumb|'''MFA Acc. #:''' 2004.2110]]
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[[File:500_0810_7.jpg|thumb|Archival Quality Polyethylene Bags]]
 +
[[File:DT 7-14-2004 Packed with Ethafoam.jpg|thumb|Ethafoam]]
 
== Description ==
 
== Description ==
  
A thermoplastic polymer or copolymer of ethylene. Ethylene was first polymerized in 1933 by ICI in England and was commercially released as Alkathene in 1939. In 1954, Karl Ziegler developed a process for high molecular weight polyethylene that allowed it to be spun into fibers, molded into durable but flexible forms and cast as tough thin sheets. Polyethylene made by the original process is now called [[low density polyethylene]] (density = 0.92, melting pt=110-120 C) while polymers made by the later Ziegler or Phillips processes are called [[high density polyethylene]] (density=0.95-0.96, melting pt=130-138C). Polyethylene is a translucent waxy polymer with good impact strength and tensile strength. It is widely used for packaging, coatings, liners, plastic sheets, wire coatings, underwater cables, containers, waste bags, toys, and squeeze bottles. Small amounts of additives (antioxidants, light stabilizers, slip agents, antistatic agents, flame retardants, pigments, etc.) are typically added to the final products. Polyethylene is recyclable and many products, such as [[Tyvek]], contain the recycled polymer.
+
A thermoplastic polymerin the polyolefin familywith a base formula of [-CH2-]n. Ethylene was first polymerized in 1933 by ICI in England and was commercially released as Alkathene in 1939. In 1954, Karl Ziegler developed a process for high molecular weight polyethylene that allowed it to be spun into fibers, molded into durable but flexible forms and cast as tough thin sheets. Polyethylene made by the original process is now called [[low density polyethylene]] (LDPE; density = 0.92, melting pt=110-120 C) because if has extensive branching resulting in a softer, more flexible  product with low tensile strength. Polymers made by the later Ziegler or Phillips processes are called [[high density polyethylene]] or (HDPE; density=0.95-0.96, melting pt=130-138C) because they lave a low degree of branching resulting in high tensile strength. LDPE is softer, more flexible and has of lower tensile strength than HDPE <ref name=T>Tetreault, Jean. Products Used in Preventative Conservation- Technical Bulletin 32.  https://www.canada.ca/en/conservation-institute/services/conservation-preservation-publications/technical-bulletins/products-used-preventive-conservation.html#a3b1e</ref>, <ref name=Sh>Shashoua, Yvonne. Conservation of Plastics: Materials Science, Degradation and Preservation. Amsterdam etc.: Elsevier, 2008.</ref>. HDPE tends to have a longer lifespan than LDPE <ref name=T/>. In general, polyethylenes are translucent waxy polymers with good impact strength that are widely used for packaging, coatings, liners, plastic sheets, wire coatings, underwater cables, containers, waste bags, toys, and squeeze bottles. Small amounts of additives (antioxidants, light stabilizers, slip agents, antistatic agents, flame retardants, pigments, etc.) are typically added to the final products. Polyethylene is recyclable and many products, such as [[Tyvek]], contain the recycled polymer.
  
[[File:500_0810_7.jpg|thumb|Archival Quality Polyethylene Bags]]
+
Examples include:
== Synonyms and Related Terms ==
+
{| class="wikitable" style="text-align:center"
 
+
! Polyethylene Types !! Forms!! Products
PE; polietileno (Esp.); polythylne (Fr.); polietilene (It.); polietileno (Port.); polyolefin; polythene; alkathene
+
|-
 
+
! High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)
Examples: Volara; Ethafoam; Tyvek [DuPont]; Hi Core [Matra Plast]; Tupperware; Lennite; Corrulite;
+
|Closed cell foam
 
+
(non-crosslinked)
[[[SliderGallery rightalign|aaiP-ETHYLN.jpg~FTIR]]]
+
|Sealed Air Corp. formerly Dow; Ethafoam 180, 220, 400, 600, 900, 180 AS, 220 AS<br>
 
+
Pregis Corp; PolyPlank
== Other Properties ==
 
 
 
Soluble in xylene, trichlorobenzene, decane at room temperature and most chlorinated and aromatic solvents when gently heated.  Insoluble in acetone, diethyl ether.
 
 
 
Burns with yellow flame and blue center that smells like paraffin.
 
 
 
Floats on water.
 
 
 
{| class="wikitable"
 
 
|-
 
|-
! scope="row"| Composition
+
! High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)
| [-CH2-]n
+
|Closed-cell foam (cross-linked)
 +
|Sekisui Voltek; Volara
 +
Zotefoams Ltd.; Plastazote
 +
MicroCell
 
|-
 
|-
! scope="row"| CAS
+
! High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE)
| 9002-88-4
+
|Spun bonded fiber
 +
|DuPont; Tyvek-10(stiff), Tyvek-14(soft), <br>Tyvek-16(perforated)
 
|-
 
|-
! scope="row"| Melting Point
+
!Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE)<br>
| 110-138
+
Closed cell foam (non-crosslinked)
 +
|Sealed Air Corp.(Cellu-Cushion; Celluplank; Cell-Aire; Stratocell
 
|-
 
|-
! scope="row"| Density
+
!Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE)
| 0.92-0.96
+
|Plastic film with sealed bubbles
 +
|Sealed Air Corp (Bubble Wrap, Polycap, Aircap)<br>
 +
Pregis (Astro-Cell; Astro-Bubble; Astro-Suprabubble)<br>
 
|-
 
|-
! scope="row"| Refractive Index
 
| 1.52
 
 
|}
 
|}
 +
Some brands available in Antistatic (Pink), Flame-retardant (Blue), and Recycled (Green).
  
== Hazards and Safety ==
+
== Synonyms and Related Terms ==
  
Degraded by ultraviolet light and sulfur containing pollutants.
+
PE; polietileno (Esp.); polythylne (Fr.); polietilene (It.); polietileno (Port.); polyolefin; polythene; alkathene
  
May contain additives (such as antioxidant BHT) that can migrate to adjacent materials and cause staining. 
+
Examples: Volara; Ethafoam; Tyvek [DuPont]; Hi Core [Matra Plast]; Tupperware; Lennite; Corrulite; Cellu-Cushion; Trirod; Ethalux; Plastazoate; Colara; Correx
 
+
[[[SliderGallery rightalign|aaiP-ETHYLN.jpg~FTIR]]]
Dow Corning: [http://hazard.com/msds/f2/bsc/bscjn.html MSDS]
+
== Applications ==
 +
* Storage containers
 +
* Transparent sheets and films
 +
* Foams
 +
* Hot-melt adhesives
 +
* Spun-bonded fibers products
 +
== Personal Risks ==
 +
Dow Corning: [http://hazard.com/msds/f2/bsc/bscjn.html SDS]
  
== Comparisons ==
+
== Collection Risks ==
 +
* Degraded by ultraviolet light with discoloration, mechanical damage, and potential sulfur containing pollutants. Discoloration and mechanical damage will also occur in the dark at 50 degrees Celsius <ref name=Sh/>.
 +
* May contain additives (such as antioxidant BHT) that can migrate to adjacent materials that may be absorbed by adjacent objects and cause staining <ref name=T/>.
 +
* Slip agents such as alkyl amides may be transferred to objects
 +
* Not as chemically stable as polyester films and not as clear.
 +
* Polyethylene can be damaged by contact with objects that contain oils, fats, waxes or solvents., <ref name=T/>, <ref>Scott R. Williams. Plastic Storage Products. In ‘Preventive Conservation: Collection Storage’ Lisa Elkin and Christopher A. Norris (eds.), Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections, New York. 2019. 773,774.</ref>
 +
* Slip agents, suck as alkyl amides may be transferred to objects
 +
* Not susceptible to hydrolysis. “Highly hydrophobic polymers such as polyethylene and polypropylene are unlikely to have hydrolysable chemical groups, so are not subject to hydrolytic breakdown” <ref name=Sh/>.
  
[[media:download_file_368.pdf|Physical Properties for Selected Thermoplastic Resins]]
+
== Environmental Risks ==
  
[[media:download_file_369.pdf|General Characteristics of Polymers]]
+
== Physical and Chemical Properties ==
  
== Additional Information ==
+
* Soluble in xylene, trichlorobenzene, decane at room temperature and most chlorinated and aromatic solvents when gently heated. 
 +
* Insoluble in acetone, diethyl ether.
 +
* Burns with yellow flame and blue center that smells like paraffin.
 +
* Floats on water.
 +
* CAS = 9002-88-4
 +
* Melting Point = 110-138
 +
* Density = 0.92-0.96
 +
* Refractive Index = 1.52
  
° [http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/Oddy_Test_Results:_Case_Construction_Materials#Volara0007 Volara] tested in 2016
+
== Working Properties==
 +
Less transparent than polypropylene. Polyethylene has good chemical resistance.
  
° [http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/Oddy_Test_Results:_Case_Construction_Materials#Volara0006 black Volara] tested in 2016
+
== Comparisons ==
  
° [http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/Oddy_Test_Results:_Case_Construction_Materials#Volara0005 Volara] tested in 2016
+
[[media:download_file_368.pdf|Physical Properties for Selected Thermoplastic Resins]]
  
° [http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/Oddy_Test_Results:_Case_Construction_Materials#Volara0004 Volara] tested in 2016
+
[[media:download_file_369.pdf|General Characteristics of Polymers]]
 
 
° [http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/Oddy_Test_Results:_Case_Construction_Materials#Volara0003 Volara] tested in 2016
 
 
 
° [http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/Oddy_Test_Results:_Case_Construction_Materials#Volara0002 Volara] tested in 2016
 
 
 
° [http://www.conservation-wiki.com/wiki/Oddy_Test_Results:_Case_Construction_Materials#Volara0001 Volara] tested in 2016
 
 
 
== Additional Images ==
 
 
 
<gallery>
 
File:DT 7-14-2004 Packed with Ethafoam.jpg|Ethafoam
 
</gallery>
 
 
 
 
 
== Sources Checked for Data in Record ==
 
  
* G.S.Brady, G.S.Brady, ''Materials Handbook'', McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971  Comment: p. 304
+
== Resources and Citations ==
 +
<references/>
 +
* Contributions: Gina Watkinson, AIC Plastics Panel, 2020.
 +
* G.S.Brady, ''Materials Handbook'', McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971  Comment: p. 304
  
* Marjorie Shelley, Marjorie Shelley, ''The Care and Handling of Art Objects'', The Metropolitan Museum, New York, 1987
+
* Marjorie Shelley, ''The Care and Handling of Art Objects'', The Metropolitan Museum, New York, 1987
  
* Richard S. Lewis, Richard S. Lewis, ''Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary'', Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
+
* Richard S. Lewis, ''Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary'', Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  
* Rosalie Rosso King, Rosalie Rosso King, ''Textile Identification, Conservation, and Preservation'', Noyes Publications, Park Ridge, NJ, 1985
+
* Rosalie Rosso King, ''Textile Identification, Conservation, and Preservation'', Noyes Publications, Park Ridge, NJ, 1985
  
 
* Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, ''Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books: a Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology'', U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington DC, 1982
 
* Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, ''Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books: a Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology'', U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington DC, 1982
  
* Pam Hatchfield, Pam Hatchfield, ''Pollutants in the Museum Environment'', Archetype Press, London, 2002
+
* Pam Hatchfield, ''Pollutants in the Museum Environment'', Archetype Press, London, 2002
  
* Thomas C. Jester (ed.), Thomas C. Jester (ed.), ''Twentieth-Century Building Materials'', McGraw-Hill Companies, Washington DC, 1995
+
* Thomas C. Jester (ed.), ''Twentieth-Century Building Materials'', McGraw-Hill Companies, Washington DC, 1995
  
* Random House, Random House, ''Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language'', Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
+
* Random House, ''Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language'', Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
  
* M.Kaufman, M.Kaufman, ''The First Century of Plastics'', The Plastics and Rubber Institute, London, 1963
+
* M.Kaufman, ''The First Century of Plastics'', The Plastics and Rubber Institute, London, 1963
  
 
* Art and Architecture Thesaurus Online, http://www.getty.edu/research/tools/vocabulary/aat/, J. Paul Getty Trust, Los Angeles, 2000
 
* Art and Architecture Thesaurus Online, http://www.getty.edu/research/tools/vocabulary/aat/, J. Paul Getty Trust, Los Angeles, 2000
  
* Website address 1, Website address 1  Comment: www.nswpmith.com.au/historyofplastics.html
+
* Website address 1  Comment: www.nswpmith.com.au/historyofplastics.html
  
 
* ''The Dictionary of Art'', Grove's Dictionaries Inc., New York, 1996  Comment: "Plastics"
 
* ''The Dictionary of Art'', Grove's Dictionaries Inc., New York, 1996  Comment: "Plastics"
  
* Sharon Blank, Sharon Blank, An introduction to plastics and rubbers in collections, ''Studies in Conservation'', 35, 53-63, 1990
+
* Sharon Blank, An introduction to plastics and rubbers in collections, ''Studies in Conservation'', 35, 53-63, 1990
  
  
  
 
[[Category:Materials database]]
 
[[Category:Materials database]]

Latest revision as of 09:25, 29 July 2020

MFA Acc. #: 2004.2110
Archival Quality Polyethylene Bags
Ethafoam

Description

A thermoplastic polymerin the polyolefin familywith a base formula of [-CH2-]n. Ethylene was first polymerized in 1933 by ICI in England and was commercially released as Alkathene in 1939. In 1954, Karl Ziegler developed a process for high molecular weight polyethylene that allowed it to be spun into fibers, molded into durable but flexible forms and cast as tough thin sheets. Polyethylene made by the original process is now called Low density polyethylene (LDPE; density = 0.92, melting pt=110-120 C) because if has extensive branching resulting in a softer, more flexible product with low tensile strength. Polymers made by the later Ziegler or Phillips processes are called High density polyethylene or (HDPE; density=0.95-0.96, melting pt=130-138C) because they lave a low degree of branching resulting in high tensile strength. LDPE is softer, more flexible and has of lower tensile strength than HDPE [1], [2]. HDPE tends to have a longer lifespan than LDPE [1]. In general, polyethylenes are translucent waxy polymers with good impact strength that are widely used for packaging, coatings, liners, plastic sheets, wire coatings, underwater cables, containers, waste bags, toys, and squeeze bottles. Small amounts of additives (antioxidants, light stabilizers, slip agents, antistatic agents, flame retardants, pigments, etc.) are typically added to the final products. Polyethylene is recyclable and many products, such as Tyvek, contain the recycled polymer.

Examples include:

Polyethylene Types Forms Products
High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) Closed cell foam

(non-crosslinked)

Sealed Air Corp. formerly Dow; Ethafoam 180, 220, 400, 600, 900, 180 AS, 220 AS

Pregis Corp; PolyPlank

High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) Closed-cell foam (cross-linked) Sekisui Voltek; Volara

Zotefoams Ltd.; Plastazote MicroCell

High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE) Spun bonded fiber DuPont; Tyvek-10(stiff), Tyvek-14(soft),
Tyvek-16(perforated)
Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE)

Closed cell foam (non-crosslinked)

Sealed Air Corp.(Cellu-Cushion; Celluplank; Cell-Aire; Stratocell
Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE) Plastic film with sealed bubbles Sealed Air Corp (Bubble Wrap, Polycap, Aircap)

Pregis (Astro-Cell; Astro-Bubble; Astro-Suprabubble)

Some brands available in Antistatic (Pink), Flame-retardant (Blue), and Recycled (Green).

Synonyms and Related Terms

PE; polietileno (Esp.); polythylne (Fr.); polietilene (It.); polietileno (Port.); polyolefin; polythene; alkathene

Examples: Volara; Ethafoam; Tyvek [DuPont]; Hi Core [Matra Plast]; Tupperware; Lennite; Corrulite; Cellu-Cushion; Trirod; Ethalux; Plastazoate; Colara; Correx

FTIR

AaiP-ETHYLN.jpg

Applications

  • Storage containers
  • Transparent sheets and films
  • Foams
  • Hot-melt adhesives
  • Spun-bonded fibers products

Personal Risks

Dow Corning: SDS

Collection Risks

  • Degraded by ultraviolet light with discoloration, mechanical damage, and potential sulfur containing pollutants. Discoloration and mechanical damage will also occur in the dark at 50 degrees Celsius [2].
  • May contain additives (such as antioxidant BHT) that can migrate to adjacent materials that may be absorbed by adjacent objects and cause staining [1].
  • Slip agents such as alkyl amides may be transferred to objects
  • Not as chemically stable as polyester films and not as clear.
  • Polyethylene can be damaged by contact with objects that contain oils, fats, waxes or solvents., [1], [3]
  • Slip agents, suck as alkyl amides may be transferred to objects
  • Not susceptible to hydrolysis. “Highly hydrophobic polymers such as polyethylene and polypropylene are unlikely to have hydrolysable chemical groups, so are not subject to hydrolytic breakdown” [2].

Environmental Risks

Physical and Chemical Properties

  • Soluble in xylene, trichlorobenzene, decane at room temperature and most chlorinated and aromatic solvents when gently heated.
  • Insoluble in acetone, diethyl ether.
  • Burns with yellow flame and blue center that smells like paraffin.
  • Floats on water.
  • CAS = 9002-88-4
  • Melting Point = 110-138
  • Density = 0.92-0.96
  • Refractive Index = 1.52

Working Properties

Less transparent than polypropylene. Polyethylene has good chemical resistance.

Comparisons

Physical Properties for Selected Thermoplastic Resins

General Characteristics of Polymers

Resources and Citations

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 Tetreault, Jean. Products Used in Preventative Conservation- Technical Bulletin 32. https://www.canada.ca/en/conservation-institute/services/conservation-preservation-publications/technical-bulletins/products-used-preventive-conservation.html#a3b1e
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 Shashoua, Yvonne. Conservation of Plastics: Materials Science, Degradation and Preservation. Amsterdam etc.: Elsevier, 2008.
  3. Scott R. Williams. Plastic Storage Products. In ‘Preventive Conservation: Collection Storage’ Lisa Elkin and Christopher A. Norris (eds.), Society for the Preservation of Natural History Collections, New York. 2019. 773,774.
  • Contributions: Gina Watkinson, AIC Plastics Panel, 2020.
  • G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971 Comment: p. 304
  • Marjorie Shelley, The Care and Handling of Art Objects, The Metropolitan Museum, New York, 1987
  • Richard S. Lewis, Hawley's Condensed Chemical Dictionary, Van Nostrand Reinhold, New York, 10th ed., 1993
  • Rosalie Rosso King, Textile Identification, Conservation, and Preservation, Noyes Publications, Park Ridge, NJ, 1985
  • Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books: a Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington DC, 1982
  • Pam Hatchfield, Pollutants in the Museum Environment, Archetype Press, London, 2002
  • Thomas C. Jester (ed.), Twentieth-Century Building Materials, McGraw-Hill Companies, Washington DC, 1995
  • Random House, Webster's Encyclopedic Unabridged Dictionary of the English Language, Grammercy Book, New York, 1997
  • M.Kaufman, The First Century of Plastics, The Plastics and Rubber Institute, London, 1963
  • Website address 1 Comment: www.nswpmith.com.au/historyofplastics.html
  • The Dictionary of Art, Grove's Dictionaries Inc., New York, 1996 Comment: "Plastics"
  • Sharon Blank, An introduction to plastics and rubbers in collections, Studies in Conservation, 35, 53-63, 1990

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