Polymer materials are often supplemented with trace amounts of additives to impart functionality, workability, and stability to the material and to improve the quality of the product. These advantages have led to the widespread use of polymer materials in daily life. It is necessary for chemical identification and quantitative analysis of additives to understand their effects on polymers and their quality. Alfa Chemistry's analytical experts can provide analytical services for additives in polymeric materials or products in our polymer analysis laboratories.
Our analysis scopes
The purpose of additive analysis is to verify product consistency with the original formula, compare competing products, determine the cause of failure, or optimize the development of new products. We offer a range of additive analysis services, the main scope of which is shown below.
- Light stabilizers
- Heat stabilizers
- Optical brighteners
- Mould inhibitors
- Flame retardants
- Other additives
Our analysis methods
Our analytical laboratory platform is equipped with a range of professional and reliable analytical tools to perform analytical services for polymer additives. Common additive analysis methods are listed below.
● High-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC)
HPLC is one of the most widely used methods for analysis of complex mixtures. The basic principle of this method is separation of the components of a mixture based on its interaction with stationary phase and mobile phase when it is passed through a column at high pressure. It can be used for the qualitative and quantitative analysis of non-volatile and thermally unstable polymer additives.
● Fourier transform infrared (FT-IR) spectroscopy
FT-IR spectroscopy is a powerful optical spectroscopy based on vibration measurements of an excited molecule by infrared radiation at a specific wavelength range, which allows the characterization and quantification of chemical functional groups in a sample. FTIR spectroscopy provides information on molecular structures, chemical environments, orientations, and conformations of polymer materials.
● Nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) spectroscopy
NMR spectroscopy is an analytical chemistry method used in quality control and research for determining the content and purity of a sample as well as its molecular structure. It is the most sensitive and powerful tool for the determination of polymer structures and the presence of functional groups in polymer chains.
● Gas chromatography-mass spectrometry (GC-MS)
GC-MS is an analytical method that combines the features of gas-chromatography and mass spectrometry to identify different substances within a test sample. It can be used to assess the presence and quantity of various additives in polymer materials. It also enables the identification of unknown compounds by matching full mass spectrum of unknown peaks with a mass spectral library or a database.
● Ultraviolet-visible (UV–vis) spectroscopy
UV-vis spectroscopy is a cost-effective, simple, versatile, and powerful analytical technique suitable for a large spectrum of organic compounds and some inorganic species. It encompasses absorption spectroscopy and reflectance spectroscopy in the UV–vis spectral region. Molecules containing π-electrons or non-bonding electrons (n-electrons) can absorb ultraviolet or visible light energy and be excited to higher anti-bonding molecular orbitals. Because of its sensitivity (<10−5 molar), UV-vis spectroscopy has been particularly useful in identifying the additives in polymers.