Thermoplastic Polyurethane

Symbol: TPU
Crystallinity: Amorphous
Trade Names: Desmopan, Pellethane, Texin, Elastollan, Estane

Learn more about Thermoplastic Polyurethane.


TPU Rollar Blades Fotolia_534402_M.jpgTPU is a thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) with a polyurethane base. It is at the high end of TPE’s in both price and performance. It is tough yet flexible, even at low temperatures and is very resistant to abrasion. Two types are available: ESTERS are tougher but degrade in water, and ETHERS are less tough but won’t degrade.

Processing Considerations:

  • Residence Time: Residence time is typically 2 to 4 minutes.
  • Back Pressure: Back pressure runs 150 PSI (1500 plastic pressure) or less.
  • Drying: TPU must be dried. Failure to dry adequately will cause sinks, bubbles, gassing and splay.
  • RPM: RPM runs 25 to 150.

Screw Design Based on:

  • Medium Compression Ratio
  • Medium Transition Length
  • Medium Meter Channel Depth

Other Information:

  • Mixer: A low shear mixing element, like Reiloy Westland Corporation’s Eagle, is recommended.
  • Barrier: The use of barrier screws is dependent upon grade of resin and residence time.
  • Custom Design: A custom designed screw is recommended over a general purpose design when processing TPU.
  • Recommended Valve: A 3 piece free flow or 3 piece locking valve is recommended.
  • Screw & Barrel Material Recommendation: TPU can be processed with components manufactured from standard alloys and coatings.
  • Similar to Resin: TPU can be processeed by thermoplastic methods. It processes similar to TPE except TPU does not have the same resistance to heat and compression.

High hardness grades are processed a few degrees hotter.

Various additives and/or fillers can have an effect on a resin’s process behavior. For more detailed information, please contact Reiloy Westland Corporation.

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Industry Applications - Resins

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