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A method to measure the fusion strength between expanded polystyrene (EPS) beads


Cellular polystyrene (EPS) is the most commonly used cellular thermoplast whose main applications are insulation and packages. One of its new applications is core material in building elements, and this poses higher requirements for strength. This is particularly evident in self-supporting roof elements. This study presents a method for determining the fusion strength between beads in cellular polystyrene and the dependence of this strength on processing. This method has also enabled us to determine the adhesion of cellular polystyrene beads to other materials, such as glass fibre, and it allows measurement of the fusion strength between EPS beads without the influence of porosity. Fusion strength was found to have a characteristic behaviour. It has an absolute upper limit, and fusion forces approximate this limit asymptotically as heating time is prolonged (this increase is dependent on the energy content of the steam).

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    N. Oy, “The processing of expanded polystyrene”, technical leaflet.

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JÄrvelÄ, P., Sarlin, J., JÄrvelÄ, P. et al. A method to measure the fusion strength between expanded polystyrene (EPS) beads. J Mater Sci 21, 3139–3142 (1986).

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  • Steam
  • Steam Pressure
  • Zinc Stearate
  • Expanded Polystyrene
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