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Polycarbonate: engineering plastics

Time: 2018-09-26

Polycarbonate: engineering plastics


Polycarbonate was first synthesized by German scientist Alfred Einhorn in 1898. Polycarbonate is a transparent material with good mechanical properties, flame retardancy and high temperature resistance. As one of the five engineering plastics, polycarbonate is used in construction industry, automotive parts, medical equipment, aerospace, electronics, optical lenses, optical disc materials, LED lighting... many areas, market prospects broad.

Polycarbonate was first synthesized by German scientist Alfred Einhorn in 1898, because it has not found a suitable application field, and it has been known for more than half a century. But there is always a day when gold shines. In 1955, Bayer scientist Hermann Schnell re-combined polycarbonate and applied for a patent in the same year. In the same year, Bayer officially gave its own polycarbonate the name "Makrolon".

Throughout the history of plastics technology, it must be said that the 1950s and 1960s was the era of the development of plastics technology. In the same period, in 1953, Daniel Fox, a scientist at GE (later Jack Welch, who was born in the plastics department), independently synthesized polycarbonate, and also submitted it to the US Patent Office in 1955. patent application. An intellectual property war has started...

Finally, the US Patent Office ruled that the technology patent was owned by Bayer because they submitted the application a week earlier than GE. Because of this short one week, Bayer got a lot of royalties from GE. Time is money, and it is perfectly reflected here.

Production Process:

At present, there are two main methods for the production of polycarbonate: one is phosgene method; the other is melting method. Although most manufacturers use the phosgene method, because of the phosgene poisoning and the increasing public attention to environmental issues, the new PC production base basically adopts a more environmentally friendly melting method. However, the fish and the bear's paw are not compatible. The polycarbonate produced by the melt method is still worse than the phosgene method in some properties. However, in addition to some high-end application requirements, the melt-prepared polycarbonate can basically meet most of the needs.

Although the laboratory preparation of polycarbonate has only one step of reaction, it is very simple, but it is not the case in actual production. In actual production, all raw materials need to be prepared step by step from the most basic chemical products, and the by-products generated in the process, such as heat and wastewater, are recycled and recycled. This is quite complicated. Systematic engineering. It's like making a plate of scrambled eggs, starting with growing tomatoes and raising chickens, and achieving automation and intelligence. It is not difficult to see the scale and complexity of the polycarbonate plant from Figure 1.