High-density polyethylene

High-density polyethylene (HDPE) or polyethylene high-density (PEHD) is a polyethylene thermoplastic made from petroleum. It is sometimes called “alkathene” or “polythene” when used for pipes. With a high strength-to-density ratio, HDPE is used in the production of plastic bottles, corrosion-resistant piping, geo membranes, and plastic lumber. HDPE is commonly recycled, and has the number “2” as its resin identification code.

                                                                                  (Recycling symbol of HDPE)

HDPE is known for its large strength-to-density ratio. The density of HDPE can range from 0.93 to 0.97 g/cm3 or 970 kg/m3. Although the density of HDPE is only marginally higher than that of low-density polyethylene, HDPE has little branching, giving it stronger intermolecular forces and tensile strength than LDPE. The difference in strength exceeds the difference in density, giving HDPE a higher specific strength. It is also harder and more opaque and can withstand somewhat higher temperatures (120 °C/ 248 °F for short periods). High-density polyethylene, unlike polypropylene, cannot withstand normally required autoclaving conditions. The lack of branching is ensured by an appropriate choice of catalyst (e.g., Ziegler-Natta catalysts) and reaction conditions.
The physical properties of HDPE can vary depending on the molding process that is used to manufacture a specific sample; to some degree a determining factor are the international standardized testing methods employed to identify these properties for a specific process. For example, in Rotational Molding, to identify the environmental stress crack resistance of a sample the Notched Constant Tensile Load Test (NCTL) is put to use.


HDPE is widely used range of plastic product and have a vast application:

  • Swimming pool installation
  • 3-D printer filament Arena Board (puck board)
  • Backpacking frames
  • Ballistic plates Banners
  • Bottle caps
  • Boats
  • Chemical-resistant piping Coax cable inner insulator
  • Food storage containers
  • Fuel tanks for vehicles
  • Corrosion protection for steel pipelines
  • Personal Hovercraft;
  • albeit too heavy for good performance
  • Electrical and plumbing boxes
  • Far-IR lenses Folding chairs and tables
  • Geomembrane for hydraulic applications (such as canals and bank reinforcements) and chemical containment
  • Geothermal heat transfer
  • piping systems
  • Heat-resistant firework mortars
  • Last for shoes Natural gas
  • distribution pipe systems
  • Fireworks Piping for Water Piping for Sewer Plastic bags
  • Plastic bottles suitable both for recycling (such as milk jugs) or re-use Plastic lumber
  • Plastic surgery (skeletal and facial reconstruction)
  • Root barrier
  • Snowboard rails and boxes Stone
  • paper Storage sheds
  • Telecom ducts
  • Tyvek Water pipes for domestic water supply and agricultural processes
  • Wood plastic composites (utilizing recycled polymers)

HDPE is also used for cell liners in subtitle D sanitary landfills, wherein large sheets of HDPE are either extrusion or wedge welded to form a homogeneous chemical-resistant barrier, with the intention of preventing the pollution of soil and groundwater by the liquid constituents of solid waste.




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