The polycarbonate sheets are apparently replacing glass in quite a number of applications.
This has been due to their high impact strength, flame resistance, light weight, better light transmission and charming appearance.
Polycarbonate (PC) is one of those materials with very unique physical and chemical properties. It is these properties which determine the ultimate use and the efficiency of these materials.
The excellent toughness, thermal stability and good stability depend on a number of both chemical and physical properties such as molecular structure and density of polycarbonate sheet.
Ideally, its density is about 1.20 g/cm3 ,thermal coefficient of expansion is about 65 x 10-6,tensile strength is about 70 – 80 N/mm² and the impact strength is 60 – 80 Kj/m².
Just to highlight some of the few essential features. During the manufacturing process, these features are usually manipulated to meet certain specific requirements.
For these reasons, you need to be very cautious when you are specifying polycarbonate materials in any form of application.
Some factors such as transparency of the material are also determined by certain factors such as the density of polycarbonate sheet is very crucial.
Remember, all polycarbonate sheets are polymers with excellent transparency when not in the crystallized state.
However, when they are thick due to the density of polycarbonate sheets, they are slightly yellowish.
Furthermore, the density of these materials also determines the refractive index of the PCs which is about 1.584,this is a very high refractive index.
In the liquid state, they are highly viscous due to the relative rigidity of the chain molecules.
The density of polycarbonate sheets is not affected by moisture and this is one of the reasons why it is used in roofing.
It can be really pathetic to have a roof which absorbs a substantial amount of water. One essential chemical property of polycarbonate materials is that they absorb very small quantities of water, which is less than 0.6%.
Nevertheless, it is important to note that when you not expose them to hot water for a very long period of time.
In such situations, the polycarbonate sheet may decompose thereby reducing its ability to resist shock.
Another good thing about polycarbonate sheets is that they cannot be attacked by quite a number of minerals and organic acids.
However, it is important to note that it is partially soluble in several halogenous hydrocarbons.
Even though every individual would wish to have such types of materials, when they are exposed to UV light they turn a yellow color within a very short period of time.
Therefore, it is important to go for those PC sheets which have passed through the anti UV light treatment.
Apart from the density of polycarbonate sheets, their electrical properties are also of significance in most industrial applications.
PCs have good insulation properties. They are neither affected by the fluctuating environmental temperatures nor the humidity.
This is another reason why they are mostly used in the construction of roofs and green houses.
Moreover, the polycarbonate materials are self-extinguishing. This is also an essential quality, especially in areas which are prone to fire outbreak.
From these physical and chemical properties of polycarbonates, it is quite evident why PCs are in high demand for both industrial and domestic applications.
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