Polyethylene (PE) is the most commonly used plastic polymer in the world with annual consumption rates exceeding 50 billion pounds per year. Over 70 percent of Porex products use porous polyethylene.
With a linear molecular structure of repeating –CH2-CH2-units, PE is a semi-crystalline polymer that elongates before breaking, enhancing its toughness. In general, porous PE is considered a strong, lightweight thermoplastic with strong chemical resistance. Products made from standard polyethylene grades typically have pore size diameters ranging from 7 to 150 micrometers, but these nominal values can be increased to 300 micrometers with special blends.
Porex high-density polyethylene (HDPE) is available in sheets, rods, tubes and molded shapes. HDPE can be used in continuous service at temperatures up to 180°F (82°C) and intermittently at 240°F (116°C). If not stressed, it is stable at 212°F (100°C) in continuous service.
As with high-density polyethylene, Porex ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) comes in sheets, rods, tubes, and molded shapes. UHMWPE is a strong, lightweight material embodying all the characteristics of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) plus the added feature of being resistant to concentrated acids and alkalis as well as numerous organic solvents. This material has the same temperature limitations as HDPE.