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Polyurethanes are a highly variable family

  • Update:07-10-2016
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    Polyurethanes are a highly variable family of polymers, […]

    Polyurethanes are a highly variable family of polymers, materials that result from the linking of a chain of simple, repetitive molecules. These materials can be seen in many forms and can be put to numerous uses, depending upon how their properties are manipulated. Polyurethaneresin, which is a synthetically produced sticky substance, is one of those forms.

    Polyurethane resin is an industrial product that is used in the production of many other products, such as rubbers and medicines. To understand this material, it is best to have a basic understanding of how polyurethanes are made.

    An isocyanate is a compound composed of nitrogen, carbon, and oxygen. When it's exposured to a hydroxyl, a compound that contains hydrogen, it will form a urethane linkage. A diisocyanate is a compound that contains two isocyanates, so these are, therefore, also reactive to hydrogen. They are mostly produced for the role they play in making polyurethane, which is a reaction that involves more than one urethane linkage.

    Polyols are basically alcohols that contain more than one hydrogen atom. Producing polyurethane resin generally involves allowing a reaction between a polyol, such as polyether polyol, and a diisocyanate, such as toluene diisocyanate. Heat or catalysts are also necessary to complete the process, and when they are added, the resin will generally take a final and irreversible form. This means it may be impossible to reform them even if heat is added again.

    Polyurethane is a resilient, flexible and durable manufactured material that can take the place of paint, cotton, rubber, metal or wood in thousands of applications across virtually all fields. It can be hard like fiberglass, squishy like upholstery foam, protective like varnish, bouncy like rubber or sticky like glue. Since its invention during the 1940s, polyurethane has been used in a wide range of items, from baby toys to airplane wings, and it continues to be adapted for contemporary technology.