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Polyethylene Specifications

904 West 6th Street, Shiner, Texas 77984 USA
Phone: 1-361-594-2941     Fax: 1-361-594-2349     E-Mail: info@boedeker.com

1-800-444-3485

BPI Home Page | Applications | Materials Guide | Contact Us!

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GENERAL DESCRIPTION
Polyethylenes are semi-crystalline materials with excellent chemical resistance, good fatigue and wear resistance, and a wide range of properties (due to differences in length of the polymer chain.) Polyethylenes are easy to distinguish from other plastics because they float in water.

GENERAL PROPERTIES OF POLYETHYLENES
Polyethylenes provide good resistance to organic solvents, degreasing agents and electrolytic attack. They have a higher impact strength, but lower working temperatures and tensile strengths than polypropylene. They are light in weight, resistant to staining, and have low moisture absorption rates.

POLYETHYLENE GRADES
Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE)
This extruded material offers good corrosion resistance and low moisture permeability. It can be used in applications where corrosion resistance is important, but stiffness, high temperatures, and structural strength are not. A highly flexible product, LDPE is used widely in orthopaedic products, or where mobility without stress fatigue is desired. LDPE is also frequently used in comsumer packaging, bags, bottles, and liners.

High Density Polyethylene (HDPE)
Representing the largest portion of the polyethylene applications, HDPE offers excellent impact resistance, light weight, low moisture absorption, and high tensile strength. HDPE is also non-toxic and non-staining and meets FDA and USDA certification for food processing.

Ultra High Molecular Weight Polyethylene (UHMW PE)
Light weight (1/8 the weight of mild steel), high in tensile strength, and as simple to machine as wood, UHMW PE is the ideal material for many wear parts in machinery and equipment as well as a superb lining in material handling systems and storage containers. UHMW PE is self-lubricating, shatter resistant, long-wearing, abrasion and corrosion resistant. It meets FDA and USDA acceptance for food and pharmaceutical equipment and is a good performer in applications up to 180 °F (82 °C) or when periodically cleaned with live steam or boiling water to sterilize.

( see also Lennite® Conductive and Tivar® 1000 AntiStatic UHMW Specifications )
( see also QuickSilver® Liners )

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TYPICAL PROPERTIES of POLYETHYLENE

ASTM or UL test Property LDPE HDPE UHMW
PHYSICAL
D792 Density (lb/in³)
(g/cm³)
0.033
0.92
0.035
0.96
0.034
0.93
D570 Water Absorption, 24 hrs (%) <0.01 <0.01 <0.01
MECHANICAL
D638 Tensile Strength (psi) at 72°F 1,400 4,600 5,800
D638 Tensile Strength (psi) at 150°F 400 400 400
D638 Tensile Modulus (psi) 57,000 200,000 80,000
D638 Tensile Elongation at Break (%) 100 400 300
D790 Flexural Strength at Yield (psi) 1,500 4,600 3,500
D790 Flexural Modulus (psi) 29,000 174,000 88,000
D695 Compressive Strength (psi) 1,400 4,600 3,000
D695 Compressive Modulus (psi) 54,000 100,000 80,000
D732 Shear Strength (psi) - - 3,000
D785 Hardness, Shore D D45 D69 D62-D66
D256 IZOD Notched Impact (ft-lb/in) No Break 1.3 No Break
THERMAL
D696 Coefficient of Linear Thermal Expansion
(x 10-5 in./in./°F)
- 6 11
D648 Heat Deflection Temp (°F / °C)
at 66 psi
at 264 psi

120 / 48
116 / 46

170 / 76
176 / 80

203 / 95
180 / 82
D3418 Approx. Melting Temperature (°F / °C) 244 / 118 260 / 125 275 / 136
- Max Operating Temp (°F / °C) 160 / 71 180 / 82 180 / 82
C177 Thermal Conductivity
(BTU-in/ft²-hr-°F)
(x 10-4 cal/cm-sec-°C)

-
-

-
-

2.84
10.0
UL94 Flammability Rating HB HB< HB
ELECTRICAL
D149 Dielectric Strength (V/mil) short time, 1/8" thick 460-700 450-500 2300
D150 Dielectric Constant at 1 MHz 2.25-2.30 2.30-2.35 2.30-2.35
D150 Dissipation Factor at 1 kHz 0.0002 0.0002 0.0005
D257 Surface Resistivity (ohm/square) at 50% RH > 1015 > 1015 > 1015
D495 Arc Resistance (sec) 135-160 200-250 250-350
NOTE: The information contained herein are typical values intended for reference and comparison purposes only. They should NOT be used as a basis for design specifications or quality control. Contact us for manufacturers' complete material property datasheets.
All values at 73°F (23°C) unless otherwise noted.

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Boedeker Plastics, Inc.
904 West 6th Street, Shiner, Texas 77984 USA
USA TOLLFREE : 1-800-444-3485
Phone: 1-361-594-2941     Fax: 1-361-594-2349     E-Mail: info@boedeker.com

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