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Unsaturated Polyester Resins

Unsaturated polyester resins are the third-largest class of thermoset molding resins. The polyesters are low molecular weight viscous liquids dissolved in vinyl monomers like styrene to facilitate molding or shaping of the resin into a desired form before curing to rigid solids. Typical applications are in fiberglass-reinforced shower stalls, boat hulls, truck caps and airfoils, construction panels, and autobody parts and trim. Mineral-filled UPRs are used in synthetic marble countertops and autobody putty. Unfilled UPRs are used in gel coats and maintenance coatings. Adi-pure® adipic acid improves tensile and flexural strength in these resins and, at high levels, can give soft, pliable products for specialty applications. 1 Alkyd resins, a common type of unsaturated polyester resin, utilize adipic acid where low viscosity and high flexibility are valued in plasticizer applications.
UPR resins are mainly aromatic polyesters. Flexibility of UPR is increased by replacing a portion of aromatic acid with Adi-pure® adipic acid. A cure site monomer, like maleic anhydride, is incorporated to provide unsaturation within the polymer backbone. Crosslinking is by free radical addition polymerization of styrene monomer/diluent.
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