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POLYETHYLENE TEREPHTHALATE, PET, PETE, (POLYESTER)

V. Ryan 2011

 

Polyethylene terephthalate or PET / PETE, is used to manufacture the packaging of some food products. This includes the packaging for fruit and drinks containers. It is lightweight, usually transparent, although it is also available in a range of colours. It is sometimes referred to a polyester, as it is a member of the polyester family of polymers.

PET / PETE is a thermoplastic polymer and has good strength , ductility, stiffness and hardness. It can be processed through vacuum forming, injection moulding, compression moulding and blow moulding.

PET / PETE is 100% recyclable, making ideal for packaging. It can also be recycled back, either to its original elements or into polyester fibres which are used in synthetic carpets. PET fibres are used in synthetic clothing and other textile products. Although PET fibres do not have the same ‘feel’ as natural fibres, it is relatively wrinkle free and less expensive. PET fibres are often mixed with natural fibres, combining the properties of both.

PET can be used for the manufacture of microwavable trays. This is evident when inspecting the recycling symbol, on the packaging of microwavable meals. It also resists the heat of domestic ovens, making it ideal for the packaging of pre-prepared oven meals.

It is used in containers for cosmetic products and pharmaceutical products.

When in the form of bottles, it is extremely strong and can withstand knocks and drops without breaking, unlike its glass equivalent. It is extremely lightweight, which is another advantage, compared to glass.

 
 
 
 
 
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