Plastic materials offer a unique balance of strength and ductility associated with their inherent viscoelastic nature. However, they are susceptible to molecular degradation through a variety of exposures. Molecular degradation is a permanent change in molecular weight that reduces the mechanical properties and integrity of the plastic material. This degradation can occur during compounding, processing, storage, or while in service. Such degradation mechanisms include:
The various forms of molecular degradation account for approximately 20% of plastic part failure, and understanding the nature of degradation can help prevent failure. Topics covered during this session will include:
Jeffrey A. Jansen is the Engineering Manager and a Partner at The Madison Group, an independent plastics engineering and consulting firm. Jeff is a proven plastic professional with more than 30 years of experience solving problems and addressing opportunities related to polymeric materials. He specializes in failure analysis, material identification and selection, as well as compatibility, aging, and lifetime prediction studies for thermoplastic materials. Jeff has performed over 5,000 investigations, both for industrial clients and as a part of litigation. He is a regular presenter on the SPE webinar series, covering a wide range of topics related to plastics failure, material performance, testing, and polymer technology. Jeff is a graduate of Carroll College and the Milwaukee School of Engineering.
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