Polímeros: Ciência e Tecnologia
Polímeros: Ciência e Tecnologia
Original Article

Presence of iron in polymers extruded with corrosive contaminants or abrasive fillers

Franco, Marcos Fernado; Gadioli, Renan; De Paoli, Marco Aurelio

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Off-site measurements of the dimensions of extruder screws are used to monitor their wear. This wear causes the presence of metals in the processed polymer. We detected the presence of iron in polymers processed with corrosive contaminants or abrasive fillers. To this end we processed poly(ethylene terephthalate), PET, pure or contaminated with poly(vinyl chloride), PVC, and other thermoplastics reinforced with glass fibers, talc or vegetal fibers, and analyzed the metals in the processed materials by X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy. We show that iron dispersed in the polymer melt is generated by corrosion from the PET contaminated with PVC and by erosion from abrasive fillers. The contents of iron in the extruded polymers clearly indicate equipment wear. This contaminant acts as a polymer pro-degradant, decreasing its lifetime. Additionally, we show that the lower concentration of iron for composites with vegetal fibers indicates a lower abrasion in comparison to talc and glass fibers.


extrusion; fibers; fillers; iron contamination; talc


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