Elastomers are polymers with reversible elastic properties, returning to their original shape after being stretched. Their molecular structure comprises flexible main chains linked by chemical cross-links, giving elastomers excellent elasticity and shock-absorbing properties. They are widely used in applications requiring significant deformation and return to original shape, such as seals, tires, drive belts, and various components in the automotive industry.
Thermoplastic elastomers, on the other hand, are distinguished by their ability to become soft and malleable when heated, while retaining their elastic properties at room temperature. Unlike traditional elastomers, thermoplastic elastomers can be melted and molded repeatedly without significantly altering their characteristics. This property makes them suitable for more flexible manufacturing processes, such as plastic injection molding. Thermoplastic elastomers find applications in fields such as seals, ergonomic handles and medical components, offering a unique combination of flexibility and ease of processing.
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