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Polymer Chemistry

EAG has significant expertise in polymer chemistry and offers a complete range of analyses for polymers and composites. We can provide analytical services from basic characterization of materials to investigations involving complex problems. Plastic materials can be found in a wide variety of industries, including medical devices, packaging, coatings, sporting goods, toys, industrial products, construction materials, consumer goods and more.

In our plastic testing labs, we use analytical instrumentation such as FTIR, TGA, DSC, mDSC, TMA, DMA, GPC, GC/MS, LC/MS, Optical Microscopy, NMR, SEM/EDS, XPS, TOF-SIMS and Pyrolysis-GC-MS. Our experts have years of experience designing technical projects and interpreting data to investigate challenges such as:

  • Deformulation (reverse engineering) of a competitor’s product
  • Establish root cause for product failures such as premature breakage
  • Investigate additives in a polymer sample
  • Identification of suspected contaminated materials
  • Determine the source of malodor or the cause for unexpected color variations
  • Compare good vs. bad lots of samples to understand cause for differences

We have extensive experience in plastic and polymer analysis and processing. Our polymer and plastic testing experts have investigated a wide range of polymeric materials, including:

  • Thermoplastics
  • Thermosets
  • Elastomers
  • Rubbers
  • Composites
  • Polyurethanes
  • Single-layer and multi-layer films
  • Adhesives & sealants
  • Paints & coatings
  • Packaging
  • High-performance engineered polymers
  • Specialty polymers
  • Conductive polymers
  • Bio-polymers
  • Liquid crystal polymers

EAG’s polymer investigations focus on both the chemistry of these formulated products as well as evaluating their physical and mechanical properties. Depending on our clients’ needs, EAG can offer a strategic combination of physical and chemical testing to address specific questions. We apply multiple analytical techniques, such as spectroscopy, chromatography and microscopy to examine the composition of plastic and polymer products.

Physical and mechanical property testing can include:

  • Tensile, modulus and elongation
  • Adhesive strength
  • Compressibility
  • Cross-sectional multiple layer-film thickness
  • Thermal properties (including glass transition, melting point, thermal expansion and crystallinity)

Chemical composition analyses can include:

  • Chemical classification including base polymer characterization
  • Molecular weight distribution
  • Total molecular weight
  • End group analysis
  • Co-polymer backbone chemistry, co-monomer contents/ratios, polymer blends
  • Additive identification including anti-oxidants, UV stabilizers, process aids, fillers