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Regulatory Responsive Antioxidants and UV Stabilizers!

Donald Rosato – Sep 26, 2019

Regulatory Responsive Antioxidants and UV Stabilizers Global plastic additive suppliers are in a business environment where increased regulatory pressures are shaping their current new product development offerings. Specialty plastic compounders are focusing hard on fast-changing regulatory environment while simultaneously meeting ongoing customer antioxidant and UV stabilizer performance improvements.

New regulatory pressures are not only affecting allowable finished product standards but how the additive product is manufactured. Just over the past decade, 50+ countries have legislatively formalized new requirements on the chemicals business segment.

Top priorities here have centered on increased health and safety benefits that in turn will generate costlier additive manufacturing process steps, ultimately leading to antioxidant and UV stabilizer pricing volatility.

One leading global regulatory driver is taking place right now in the European Union (EU). The EU REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals) has put in place this year new requirements on chemical products that include plastics additives in the 1-100 tons range per year that are either manufactured or imported into EU countries.

These EU REACH regulatory enhancements will eventually migrate into other key global geographies, such as:

 » North America
 »  The Pacific Rim countries
 »  India, and
 »  Australia

This is because major European-based chemical companies will want to standardize their products across the world to their competitive advantage. REACH regulations will almost certainly force some older antioxidant and UV stabilizer products from the marketplace.

What this all leads to is that global specialty compounders are currently in the process of:

 »  Reformulating a portion their antioxidant and UV stabilizer
 »  Strengthening their specialty ingredient supply chains, and
 »  Gravitating towards multiple site additive ingredient suppliers

Let's learn how the global plastic suppliers are meeting these requirements with their evolved products. But before that, let's understand some basics of antioxidants first...

What are Antioxidants?

Polymer oxidation sometimes termed ‘autoxidation’ proceeds starting from generation of a free radical. These react rapidly with oxygen to form peroxy radicals which in turn further react with the polymer chains to form hydroperoxides (ROOH). Cleavage of these hydroperoxides, for example on exposure to heat, produces additional free radicals that reinitiate the process to continuously fuel the degradation cycle.

The key to effective protection against oxidation is the use of different types of antioxidants/ stabilizers that can intercept radicals and degradation products at different stages of the chain reaction in order to bring the degradation cycle to a halt.

Once oxidation starts, as it invariably will, it sets off a chain reaction which accelerates degradation unless antioxidants/stabilizers are used to interrupt the oxidation cycle.

BASF Autoxidation Cycle Process
Autoxidation Cycle Process
Source: BASF AG (as cited in Plastics Additives Handbook 6E)

Antioxidants are used to provide polymer protection both against oxidation during melt processing and through the product’s life cycle as a ‘long-term thermal stabilizer.’ Such long-term thermal stabilizers differ from melt processing stabilizers. That is, they must function at temperatures considerably below the polymer melting point.

BASF Effective Temperatures for Stabilizers
Effective Temperatures for Stabilizers
Source: BASF AG (as cited in Plastics Additives Handbook 6E)

 » Continue reading to explore some of the latest regulatory antioxidants and UV stabilizers for plastics! 

1 Comments on "Regulatory Responsive Antioxidants and UV Stabilizers!"
Ravindra L Jan 8, 2020
will appreciate if you can share regulatory details of primary and secondary antioxidants manufactured by various manufacturers like BASF , SONGWON , ADEKA

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