Use of Colorants in the Plastic Industry



Pigment orange, pigment blue, pigment green; you name it and you've got a beautiful piece of plastic ware thereupon colour tint in some store or the opposite . However, in today's times the scope of pigments and dyes in plastics aren't limited merely to lending hues and shades. They also make an impression on sustainability, processability and compliance.

The question often arises on which among the two; dyes or pigments are best fitted to use within the industry . Dyes are wont to shade or tint a resin and intrinsically they need to be transparent, strong and exhibit good heat stability. However, dyes are compatible with only a couple of resins and thus their use in quite limited during this industry. Pigments on the opposite hand provide more options to the manufacturer thanks to their wider chrome range, pacifying ability and better heat stability for an outsized number of resins.

The base polymer actually decides the type of colorant which will be best suited for the appliance . Pigments work best with polyolefins while dyes give good results with polystyrene, poly carbonate and acrylic. All said and done, the essential determining factor for choice of colorant is its compatibility with the bottom resin. There are a couple of other factors that need to be kept in mind also like the tactic of dispersion, processing temperature, heat stability, gloss, weather fastness, application etc. a small error in making the selection can drastically change the features of the plastic and thus , an honest selection of the colorant assumes great importance.

Today, there's more emphasis placed on using pigments that are less toxic and cause minimum harm to the environment. many dollars are spent on research by several organisations in developing such pigments. Their efforts haven't gone vainly and one among them has been successful in replacing lead based materials in pigments. chromate pigments were banned from use in consumer plastics and in its place, organic yellow pigments are developed which have better tint strengths in PVC and polyethylene. Another new development is with reference to pigment blue. The name of the new pigment is YInMn blue which stands for its chemical content namely yttrium, manganese, indium and oxygen. This pigment is additionally superior to the normal cobalt blue pigments and has high reflectivity and high ultraviolet absorbance within the near-infrared area.

Colorants contribute to variety of performance aspects in plastics; however, lending colour will always remain their major contribution. When one sees the attractive world of colourful plastic ware one realises the important contribution made by colorants to the present industry. At an equivalent time, every individual connected with using and developing colorants for this industry has got to attempt to make a difference to the colouring technology whereby Mother Earth isn't harmed in any way whatsoever!

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