Plastic sheet and plastic film are flat pieces of plastic formed to a precise thickness for use in specific applications. Products differ in terms of materials, properties, and dimensions.
Types of Plastic Sheet and Plastic Film
The GlobalSpec SpecSearch Database contains listings on a variety of plastic types. Some of the most common are polypropylene, polycarbonate, and polyvinyl chloride.
- Polypropylene is a thermoplastic polymer that is used in packaging, textiles, stationary, laboratory equipment, and plastic parts. It is rugged and unusually resistant to many chemical solvents, acids, and bases.
- Polycarbonate is a thermoplastic polymer used in electronics, construction, data storage, automotive, aircraft, and security applications. It is a very durable transparent material with a high impact resistance but a low scratch resistance.
- Polyvinyl chloride is a thermoplastic polymer widely used in construction because it is cheap, durable, and easy to assemble. It can be made softer and more flexible by the addition of plasticizers. It is a controversial material because of the toxins it may liberate during its production and lifetime.
The choice of a chemical type determines a product’s thermal, mechanical, electrical, and optical properties. Fillers also have a large impact on a plastic’s properties. Choices include aramid fibers, chopped fibers, carbon fillers, glass powders, metal powders, and other mineral or inorganic materials. Unfilled products are also available.
Sizes and Features
Size is generally the key specification to consider for most plastic shape uses. Dimensions include overall thickness, overall width, and overall length.
In terms of features, some plastic sheets and plastics film provides anti-static control, protection against electrostatic discharge (ESD), and shielding from electromagnetic interference (EMI) or radio frequency interference (RFI). Other plastic sheets and plastic films are flame retardant, flexible, dampened, or approved by organizations such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL). Plastic sheet and plastic film that provides electrical and/or thermal insulation is also available.
Related Products & Services
Anaerobic Adhesives and Anaerobic Sealants
Anaerobic adhesives and anaerobic sealants cure in the absence of air or oxygen.
Cyanoacrylate adhesives are one-part acrylate adhesives that cure instantly on contact with mated surfaces through a reaction with surface moisture. Cyanoacrylates are often called super glues.
Hot Melt Adhesives
Hot melt adhesives are solvent-free chemical compounds that are used to join materials. They can be repeatedly softened by heat and hardened or set by cooling, allowing parts to be removed or repositioned during assembly.
Plastic and Rubber Balls
Plastic and rubber balls are rolling, spherical elements that have low friction values and require little or no lubrication. They are lighter than metal balls and resistant corrosion and abrasion. Some plastic balls resist high temperatures, but others do not. Rubber balls are characterized by a high degree of flexibility and elasticity.
Polymers and Plastic Materials
Polymers and plastic materials are organic, synthetic or processed polymers that are supplied as raw materials. They typically consist of thermoplastic or thermosetting resins in the form of pellets, powders or liquid resins. These materials can then be molded into a variety of shapes for a wide range of uses.
Rubber Adhesives and Sealants
Rubber adhesives and sealants are highly flexible, natural or synthetic materials that are used to join components or fill gaps between seams or on surfaces.
Thermal Compounds and Thermal Interface Materials
Thermal compounds and thermal interface materials form a thermally conductive layer on a substrate, between components or within a finished product.