What is Thermoplastic Elastomer (TPE) ?
A Thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) is a flexible and rubber-like material that processes like plastic. A TPE is a true thermoplastic, which does not require vulcanization or curing. Thermoplastic elastomers are processed using a variety of plastic manufacturing equipment such as, injection molding, extrusion, and blow molding. A TPE can be utilized in advanced processing such as, overmolding and two-shot molding, and can also undergo secondary operations such as, welding and bonding to various materials. Thermoplastic elastomers offer part design flexibility and easy bonding to other thermoplastic substrates.
Thermoplastic elastomers are at work everywhere! Products such as consumer goods, medical equipment, power tools, housewares, shoe insoles, and motorcycle grips are just a few of the examples of TPE materials in action.
A TPE can withstand temperature extremes without warping or cracking. Because of its ability to absorb shock, TPE materials are often used in handlebar grips and in prosthetic devices.
Thermoplastic elastomers are tear-resistant yet soft to the touch. TPE material offers noise reduction and vibration damping, making Thermoplastic elastomers especially useful in automotive applications. TPE is used in grips like those that are commonly found in exercise equipment. TPE is also easily colorable and in products all around us. The soft grips on toothbrushes, dog chew toys and the handles on garden tools are additional examples of TPE applications.
Star Thermoplastics can customize our TPE product lines of thermoplastic elastomers for your end use needs. We offer a wide range of hardness from gel-like products in Shore OO, to soft-touch TPE in the Shore A range, to harder Shore D TPE grades.