Polycarbonate - Supplier Data by Goodfellow

Background

Polycarbonate is a crystal clear and colourless, amorphous engineering thermoplastic notable for its high impact resistance (which remains high down to –40°C).

It has reasonably good temperature resistance, good dimensional stability and low creep but somewhat limited chemical resistance and is prone to environmental stress cracking. Polycarbonate also has poor fatigue and wear properties.

Applications

Applications of Polycarbonate include glazing, safety shields, lenses, casings and housings, light fittings, kitchenware (microwaveable), medical apparatus (sterilisable) and CD's (the discs).

CD's are one of many applications that use Polycarbonate due to its crystal clear and colourless appearance. Image Credit: ShutterStock/ ALEXEY Filatov

CD's are one of many applications that use Polycarbonate due to its crystal clear and colourless appearance. Image Credit: ShutterStock/ ALEXEY Filatov

Key Properties

The key properties of Polycarbonate are tabulated below.

Table 1. Key properties

Chemical Resistance
Acids - concentrated Fair
Acids - dilute Good
Alcohols Good
Alkalis Poor
Aromatic hydrocarbons Poor
Greases and Oils Good
Halogens Poor
Ketones Poor
Electrical Properties
Dielectric constant @ 1 MHz 2.9
Dielectric strength ( kV.mm-1 ) 15-67
Dissipation factor @ 1 MHz 0.01
Surface resistivity ( ohm/sq ) 1015
Volume resistivity ( ohm.cm ) 1014-1016
Mechanical Properties
Abrasive resistance - ASTM D1044
( mg/1000 cycles )
10-15
Coefficient of friction 0.31
Compressive strength ( MPa ) >80
Elongation at break ( % ) 100-150
Hardness - Rockwell M70
Izod impact strength ( J.m-1 ) 600-850
Poisson's ratio 0.37
Tensile modulus ( GPa ) 2.3-2.4
Tensile strength ( MPa ) 55-75
Physical Properties
Abbe number 34.0
Density ( g.cm-3 ) 1.2
Flammability V0-V2
Limiting oxygen index ( % ) 25-27
Refractive index 1.584-6
Resistance to Ultra-violet Fair
Water absorption - equilibrium ( % ) 0.35
Water absorption - over 24 hours ( % ) 0.1
Thermal Properties
Coefficient of thermal expansion
( x10-6 K-1 )
66-70
Heat-deflection temperature - 0.45 MPa (°C) 140
Heat-deflection temperature - 1.8 MPa (°C) 128-138
Lower working temperature (°C) -135
Specific heat ( kJ.kg-1.K-1 ) ca.1.2
Thermal conductivity @ 23 °C
( W.m-1.K-1 )
0.19-0.22
Upper working temperature (°C) 115-130
Properties Polycarbonate Film
Property Value
Dielectric Strength @ 25 µm thick kV mm-1 350 @ 40&m
Dissipation Factor @ 1 MHz 0.010
Extension to break - Longitudinal % ~100 - grade N, DE1,
~40 - grade KG
Extension to break - Transverse % ~100 - grade N, DE1,
>100 - grade KG
Heat-sealing Temperature C 204-221
Initial Tear Strength g.µm-1 12-29
Permeability to Carbon Dioxide @ 25 °C x10-13 cm3. cm.cm-2.s-1.Pa-1 4.8
Permeability to Hydrogen @ 25 °C x10-13.cm3.cm.cm-2.s-1.Pa-1 9.0
Permeability to Nitrogen @ 25 °C x10-13 cm3.cm.cm-2.s-1.Pa-1 0.23
Permeability to Oxygen @ 25 °C x10-13 cm3.cm.cm-2.s-1.Pa-1 1.05
Permeability to Water @ 25 °C x10-13 cm3.cm.cm-2.s-1.Pa-1 1050
Tensile strength - Longitudinal MPa >80 - grade N, DE1,
>220 - grade KG
Tensile strength - Transverse MPa >80

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