Plastic Part Failure Caused by Environmental Stress Cracking

Engineering plastics are widely used in chemical environments due to their broad resistance to aggressive media. Certain plastics are susceptible to environmental stress cracking (ESC), or premature brittle failure caused by the combination of stress and adverse environmental conditions. ESC is one of the most common causes of plastic part failure.

This white paper provides engineers and designers with an overview of ESC, plastic material selection, plastic part design, and assembly in order to avoid costly part failures.

Topics covered in this informative paper include:

  • Common causes of ESC and how to contend with them
  • ESC as a form of accelerated creep rupture
  • How it works (mechanism)
  • Swelling
  • Testing for ESC resistance
  • The ESC problem
  • ESC agents (absorption and diffusion) with a total solubility parameters table
  • Environmental conditions
  • Polyolefins
  • Tips to avoid ESC failure in plastic parts
  • Chemical resistance data

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Our experienced sales and technical teams are available to assist you with material selection challenges.

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