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Plastics Analysis: Comparison of Good & Bad Plastic Parts by Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR)

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Technique Used:  Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR Analysis)


Two plastic parts were submitted for plastics analysis by FTIR testing. One of the parts had fractured during use. The purpose of the FTIR testing was to determine the difference between the "good" and failed parts. A sample of the material comprising each part was analyze by Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) and compared. The bulk of the materials comprising the two parts were very similar by FTIR testing. The parts were then soaked in isopropyl alcohol. The alcohol was decanted, then evaporated. The remaining residues from the two extracts were then analyzed using attenuated total reflectance (ATR) FTIR. The spectra obtained can be seen in the figure below. Each of the extracts contained dioctylphthalate (DOP, a common plasticizer), however the amount extracted from the failed part was much less than that extracted from the good part. After a thorough plastic analysis, Innovatech analysts concluded that the failure was due to not enough plasticizer present in the "bad" parts.

 

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