Thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU) is a type of polyurethane polymer that has a thermoplastic nature, meaning it can be melted and reformed multiple times without losing its properties. It is a versatile material with a wide range of properties, including flexibility, durability, chemical resistance, and abrasion resistance. TPU is commonly used in a variety of applications, including automotive, footwear, electronics, sports and leisure, and medical devices.
TPU is produced by reacting diisocyanates with short-chain diols, which results in a polymer with alternating hard and soft segments. The hard segments provide strength and rigidity, while the soft segments provide flexibility and elasticity. By varying the types of diisocyanates and diols used, the properties of the TPU can be tailored to meet specific application requirements.
Some of the key properties of TPU include:
Flexibility: TPU has excellent flexibility and can be stretched and bent without breaking. This makes it ideal for applications that require flexibility, such as in footwear and sports equipment.
Durability: TPU is highly durable and can withstand a wide range of temperatures, chemicals, and UV radiation. This makes it ideal for use in automotive and industrial applications.
Chemical resistance: TPU is resistant to many chemicals, such as oils, solvents, and acids. This makes it ideal for use in applications where it may be exposed to harsh chemicals.
Abrasion resistance: TPU has excellent abrasion resistance, which makes it ideal for use in applications where it may be exposed to wear and tear, such as in conveyor belts or industrial coatings.
Bonding ability: TPU can be easily bonded to other materials, such as fabrics and metals, using adhesives or heat bonding. This makes it ideal for use in laminates and coatings.