Polyethersulphone (PES) - Supplier Data by Goodfellow

Background

Polyethersulphone is an amorphous, transparent and pale amber high performance thermoplastic with the characteristics common to this group - see polyetheretherketone (PEEK).

Like Polyetherimide (PEI), its properties are somewhat inferior to PEEK and it is less expensive. Polyethersulphone has a slightly higher temperature resistance than PEI (but less than PEEK) and is the most temperature resistant transparent commercially available thermoplastic.

It has a relatively high water absorption and, in common with many other plastics, drying is essential before e.g. thermoforming. Polyethersulphone has poor fatigue characteristics and is prone to environmental stress cracking but has good long term thermal ageing resistance and reasonable radiation resistance. Its chemical resistance is not as wide as PEEK's; hence stable solutions can be made if solvents are correctly chosen.

Industrial Applications

Applications of Polyethersulphone include electrical and electronic components, medical equipment that needs repeated sterilisation and photographic accessories.

Key Properties

The key properties of Polyethersulphone are tabulated below.

Table 1. Key properties

Chemical Resistance
Acids - Concentrated Fair
Acids - dilute Good
Alcohols Good
Alkalis Good
Aromatic Hydrocarbons Fair
Greases and Oils Good
Halogens Good
Ketones Poor
Electrical Properties
Dielectric constant @ 1 MHz 3.7
Dielectric strength ( kV.mm-1 ) 16
Dissipation factor @ 1 MHz 0.003
Volume resistivity ( Ohm.cm ) 1017
Mechanical Properties
Abrasive resistance - ASTM D1044 ( mg/1000 cycles ) 6
Elongation at break ( % ) 40-80
Hardness - Rockwell M88
Izod impact strength ( J.m-1 ) 85
Poisson's ratio 0.4
Tensile modulus ( GPa ) 2.4-2.6
Tensile strength ( MPa ) 70-95
Physical Properties
Density ( g.cm-3 ) 1.37
Flammability V-0 @ 0.4 mm
Limiting oxygen index ( % ) 34-41
Radiation resistance - Alpha Good
Refractive index 1.65
Resistance to Ultra-violet Fair
Water absorption - equilibrium ( % ) 2.2
Water absorption - over 24 hours ( % ) 0.4-1
Thermal Properties
Coefficient of thermal expansion ( x10-6 K-1 ) 55
Heat-deflection temperature - 0.45 MPa (°C ) >260
Heat-deflection temperature - 1.8 MPa (°C ) 203
Lower working temperature (°C ) -110
Thermal conductivity ( W.m-1.K-1 ) 0.13-0.18 @ 23
Upper working temperature (°C ) 180-220
Properties Polyethersulphone Film
Property Value
Dielectric Constant @ 1 MHz 3.7
Dielectric Strength @ 25 µm thick kV.mm-1 232
Dissipation Factor @ 1 MHz 0.012
Elongation at Break % 20-150
Flammability VTM-0 @ 25 µm
Heat-sealing Temperature °C 259-287
Initial Tear Strength g.µm-1 7.5-16.9
Permeability to Carbon Dioxide @ 25 °C x10-13 cm3.cm.cm-2.s-1.Pa-1 1.8
Permeability to Oxygen @ 25 °C x10-13 cm3.cm.cm-2.s-1.Pa-1 0.4
Permeability to Water @ 25 °C x10-13 cm3. cm.cm-2.s-1.Pa-1 75
Specific Heat kJ.kg-1.K-1 1.1

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