Polyurethanes, Polyisocyanates and Vacuum


Vacuum technology in the chemical industry

The chemical industry is a supplier of indispensable raw materials for many industries. Not only the automotive and engineering industries, for example, but also the plastics, food, glass and building material industries rely on basic chemicals produced by the chemical industry. By far the most important role is played by polyurethane plastics or resins, which serve as the basis for foams or paints. These substances are employed in countless finished products that we use on a daily basis. Vacuum technology is indispensable for a large part of these applications.

Polyurethane, polyisocyanates and vacuum
Polyurethanes are compounds which are formed in a polyaddition reaction from multiple alcohols (di-, tri- or polyols) and polyisocyanates. Depending on the basic components used, thermosetting plastics, thermoplastics or elastomers are obtained which differ greatly in their properties and can accordingly be used in a large number of different end products.

Polyurethane foam is used, for example, for upholstering furniture, as mattress foam, carpet backing material, for cleaning sponges, filter material or as insulating material for buildings and cooling devices. Polyurethane as a foam is also used in vehicle construction, for example as a soft covering for handles, interior paneling, steering wheels or arm rests.

As a component in coatings and varnishes, polyurethane is characterized by good adhesive properties and high resistance against solvents, chemicals, and weather conditions. Coatings and varnishes are used in many fields, including flooring, textiles, leather, as well as various footwear and automotive interior materials. Polyurethane has become indispensable, particularly, for the latter field of application.

Polyurethane applications in the automotive sector
Polyurethane applications in the automotive sector

In the EU alone, more than 2 million tons of polyurethanes are produced annually; global demand rises on average by 5% per year.

Read more about this state of the art technology in the attached application report.

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