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Chemical additives and agents include a wide range of materials added to polymer resins, paints and coatings, adhesives, and other substances to modify specific processing or end-use properties. They include catalysts, wetting agents, levelers, clarifiers, coupling agents, deflocculants, thinners, thickeners, anti-caking agents and other chemicals.
Forms of Chemical Additives and Agents
Chemical additives and agents are available in many different forms. Choices include:
- Inorganic chemicals or salts
- Organic chemicals or polymers
- Liquids or solutions
- Colloids or dispersions
- Bulk solids or granules
Some chemical additives and chemical agents are cationic or produce cations. Others are anionic or produce anions.
Chemical additives and agents also metal removal agents, water softeners, oxidation inhibitors, anti-oxidants, plasticizers, reaction terminations and retarders, reaction accelerators, release agents, rheology modifiers and flow agents, scale inhibitors, settling agents and flocculants, stabilizers, and anti-degradants.
- Acids, acidulants, bases, alkali compounds and buffers are used to modify pH levels.
- Stabilizers are used to impart dimensional stability, color, fragrance, heat resistance, or ultraviolet (UV) stability.
- Thickeners, thinners, waterproofing additives, hydrophobing agents, surfactants, and wetting agents are also available.
Functions of Chemical Additives and Agents
Suppliers often specify chemical additives and agents by function. Products include:
- Algaecides and antifouling agents
- Antibacterial agents and bactericides
- Anti-caking and free flow agents
- Anti-static agents and static inhibitors
- Anti-wear and extreme pressure (EP) additives
- Aromas and fragrances
- Active pharmaceutical ingredients (API) and high-potency actives (HPA)
- Aerators and air entrainment agents
- Biocides and cidal agents
- Binders and binding agents
- Catalysts and initiators
- Crosslinkers and vulcanizers
- Curing agents and hardeners
- Encapsulation and delivery systems
- Cloud point modifiers, clarifiers, conditioners and texture modifiers
- Coupling agents
- Corrosion inhibitors and vapor phase corrosion inhibitors (VCI)
Suppliers of chemical additives and agents may also provide:
- Deactivators and passivators
- Defoamers and deaerators
- Demulsifiers, denaturants, dispersing agents and deflocculants
- Emulsifiers, extenders and diluents
- Film formers and drying aids
- Flame and fire-retardant agents
- Foaming and blowing agents
- Germicides and antimicrobial agents
- Chemical inhibitors, initiators, impact modifiers and toughening agents
- Hardness and strengthening agents
- Leveling agents
- Lubricity additives
Applications for Chemical Additives and Agents
There are many applications for chemical additives and agents.
Agricultural products are used in fertilizers, nutrients, pesticides, biocides, and specialized chemical agents.
Chemical additives and agents for adhesives, sealants, cement, concrete, ceramics, cleaners, disinfectants, coatings, and paint are also available.
Some products are designed for coatings and paint, coolants and refrigerants, cosmetics and personal care items, elastomers and rubber, electronics and semiconductors, or fibers and textiles.
Others are used fermentation applications, food and beverage applications, fuels and gasoline, lubricants and greases, mining and mineral applications, maintenance and repair operations (MRO), oil and gas production processes, and water treatment applications.
Many chemical additives and agents are used in the production of pharmaceuticals and drugs, plastics and composites, pulp and paper, and wood products.
ACGIH 12-001 - Recognition and evaluation of chemical agents
ASTM D543 - Evaluating the resistance of plastics to chemical reagents
ASTM D7474 - Determining residual stresses in extruded or molded sulfone plastic (SP) parts by immersion in various chemical reagents
ASTM E200 - Standard practice for preparation, standardization, and storage of standard and reagent solutions for chemical analysis
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