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TPE-coated film with patented additive hits the roof

DSM Engineering Plastics (Sittard) : 01 July, 2004  (Application Story)
DSM Engineering Plastics
Permeability to vapour on the underside of roofing surfaces is important in domestic and commercial construction to help prevent moisture damage or mould formation due to condensation. Without permeability, condensation is almost inevitable when outside temperatures are below the temperatures of occupied interior spaces.

DSM’s Arnitel-TPE provides a breathable film - permeable by water vapour and gases - yet waterproof. In Europe, the Film Division of Lenzing AG (Lenzing, Austria) has chosen Arnitel-TPE as the material for its roofing applications.

With Arnitel film Lenzing can make an excellent film for roof underlinings and roof, wall and floor applications because of Arnitel’s high breathability and good water barrier. “Unlike competitive microporous roofing membrane structures made with polyolefins (PO), our monolithic Arnitel-TPE film is not affected by wood preservative surfactants often present in wooden roof structures,” said Francis Aussems, DSM’s application development and technical service manager for Arnitel-TPE. “This, in conjunction with its waterproof qualities, makes Arnitel-TPE film a better choice for high-performance roofing membranes. Thanks to a maximum 7% absorption of water, Arnitel-TPE monolithic film is also less likely to delaminate. We expect that higher requirements that are being legislated in Europe for residential home insulation will help drive demand for our higher performance roofing material.”

The monolithic film is intended for inclusion in multi-layer underlay on tile or metal-sheathed roofs. In making this underlay material, processors typically sandwich the Arnitel-TPE barrier layer between layers of non-woven material.

Arnitel-TPE monolithic film contains a patented additive system that provides excellent heat and UV resistance, capable of withstanding outdoor UV exposure typically up to three months before a final roof covering may be installed over the underlay.

Arnitel-TPE also retains good elasticity at high and low temperatures, exhibits excellent adhesion to polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and polyethylene (PE) substrates, and is hydrolytically stable.

In addition to superior mechanical properties, the Arnitel-TPE is optimised for processing and handling. The coating formulation is engineered to control surface tack to minimize any tendency to stick on the roll during production.

Arnitel-TPE is a family of thermoplastic copolyester elastomers from DSM that require no vulcanisation and combine the strength, processability and recyclability of engineering thermoplastics with performance generally found only in thermoset elastomers.

In addition to breathable roofing and wall membranes, Arnitel-TPE is used for a wide variety of products including constant-velocity joint boots, air ducts, airbag covers, wire and cable jacketing, sports equipment, light rail sound deadening, roofing membranes and building materials, and films.

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