Product Comparison Silicone vs. TPR
Silicone and TPR (thermoplastic rubber)they're both types of rubber and are very flexible, but their performance characteristics and uses vary. Some differences include:
Tubing manufacturing method: Silicone is a thermoset material. The raw compound is extruded into tubing and heated. It undergoes a chemical reaction that permanently sets the shape. TPR is a thermoplastic, a material that will lose its shape if reheated. TPR will repeatedly soften when heated and harden when cooled.
Applications: Silicone has been used extensively in the pharmaceutical and medical fields for many years. Its cleanliness, non-toxicity, and resistance to temperature variations meet the requirements of those industries well. Silicone also exhibits inertness toward U.V., radiation, and ozone, making it an excellent choice for electrically-associated uses. Additional applications include appliances, beverage service, insulation sleeving and thermal protection, deionized water conveyance, peristaltic pumps, automotive use, and numerous others. TPR tubing offers excellent compression characteristics and is a good fit for peristaltic pump use. Different grades make it suitable for use in clean applications such as food and beverage, pharmaceutical, and cosmetics manufacturing, as well as industrial uses like agriculture and lawn equipment, paint spray systems, and chemical transfer.
Temperature resistance: NewAge Industries' Silcon® unreinforced silicone tubing handles variations between -100°F and 500°F (-73°C and 260°C). Suprene® unreinforced TPR tubing has a range between -60°F and 275°F (-51°C and 135°C).
Other notable product variations include Silcon's certification by the National Sanitation Foundation for use with food equipment materials (NSF-51); for Suprene the compound used to make the 80A style meets NSF-51 requirements, although the tubing itself is not certified. Suprene, however, is a bit more durable when it comes to fitting attachments. Sharp barbed fittings and unlined metal clamps can tear into the tubing wall of Silcon. Both tubing products can be customized in a variety of ways, including colors, cut-to-length pieces, overbraiding, and other durometers (hardnesses).
The following chart illustrates the two materials' physical property differences.
Click here to view NewAge Industries' Silcon silicone tubing or Suprene TPR tubing.
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