Typically speaking, U.V. light and ozone have been known to cause health damage to humans, but what are its effects on thermoplastic tubing?
Depending on the length of time thermo plastic tubing is utilized in certain applications, whether it’s exposed to ozone or to UV light will determine which polymer is used to manufacture the thermoplastic extruded tubing. Taking material selection into consideration, and then adding a UV stabilizer, for example, lowers the risk that excessive exposure to potentially harmful environmental conditions cause that may compromise the performance characteristics of the thermoplastic tube. Several thermoplastic extrusion materials include polycarbonate, polyurethane, polypropylene, as well as custom compounds.
The importance of thermoplastic extruded tubing being able to withstand UV damage means different things to different people depending on the industry.
For those in the medical industry, some active agents in certain drugs will degrade when exposed to UV light. Therefore, it’s critical that the thermoplastic rod be UV resistant, such as that of thermoplastic polycarbonate that will block harmful rays from damaging the effectiveness of medications.
If the thermoplastic tubing will be subjected to outdoor applications, then custom tubing manufacturers may recommend the use of either thermoplastic polyethylene tubing or thermoplastic polypropylene tubing. As this type of exposure accelerates the deterioration rate of certain chemical properties that thermoplastic tubing is comprised of. Both will deliver reliable performance against environment stress cracking, which could cause leakage of fuels and oils.
As demonstrated, damage caused to thermoplastic tubing by long exposure of either the ozone or UV light has negative effects to be avoided. So, before you select your thermoplastic tubing, consult with your custom tubing manufacturer.