What is TPV Material? | The Definitive Guide

what is tpv material

Hello everybody, today I’m going to share a phenomenal guide on thermoplastic vulcanisate. A hybrid between plastic and rubber was invented to create revolutionary products.

What is TPV Material?

TPV is short for thermoplastic vulcanisate. It belongs to the group of thermoplastic rubber materials like TPR, TPE, and TPU. It is a high-performance elastomer with ever-increasing durability, lightweight, chemical, temperature, weathering resistance, good flexibility, and decent colorability.

It is an invention that has helped to bridge the gap between plastic and rubber.

Thermoplastic vulcanisate is a form of rubber that has been vulcanized utilizing the compounding process. That means polymers are transformed into more durable materials through the participation of crosslinks.

The compounding process makes the TPV rubber extremely flexible and customizable, thus increasing its potential applications significantly. It is called by many experts, which blurs the line between plastics and rubber.

TPV is an alloy comprised mostly of fully cured EPDM Rubber(A type of synthetic rubber) compressed in a matrix similar to polypropylene(PP).

TPVs majorly include acrylate rubber TPV (ACM), silicone rubber TPV (TPSiV), TPV based on NR or ENR, and polyolefin elastomer (EOC) / PP TPV).

Thanks to its easy customization properties, it is steadily replacing traditional thermosetting vulcanized rubber in many industries. The material is available in three physical forms – pallets, solids, and granules.

TPV Material: Key Properties 

Property Temperature Value
Tensile Strength at 200-750% strain
Elongation 23.0 °C 200 – 750 %
Melting Point 220 °C
Flammability UL 94 HB
Coefficient of thermal expansion 23.0 °C 5E-5 – 8E-5 1/K
Max service temperature, long 130 – 135 °C
Max service temperature, short 130 – 135 °C
Dielectric constant 23.0 °C 3.5 – 4 [-]
Electrical resistivity 23.0 °C
5.00E+13 – 5.00E+15 Ω·m

    TPV - key properties

    1. High resistance to a wide range of solvents, fats, and oils.
    2. 100% recyclable
    3. Excellent thermal resistance
    4. High durability makes the material withstand any significant deformation.
    5. Meager impact by aggressive outdoor exposures.
    6. Great barrier properties.
    7. Good processability
    8. Easy adhesion PE and PP for multiple-part applications

    Brands and Suppliers 

    Below is the list of top suppliers and brands of TPV material:

    Supplier Brand
    Origin Country
    ExxonMobil Chemical SANTOPRENE™ United States
    Teknor Apex Sarlink® United States
    Elastron Elastron® Turkey
    MOCOM Compounds ALFATER XL® Germany
    Celanese FORPRENE ® Italy

    Interesting Read – What is ABS Plastic | The Definitve Guide

    TPV Materials Applications

    TPV applications

    1. Automotive 
    2. Building & Construction 
    3. Appliances 
    4. Agriculture 

    1. Automotive

    The automotive industry is moving towards making less pollution-emitting and lightweight vehicles to reduce the carbon emission by industry. TPV comes to the rescue with its excellent thermal resistance and barrier properties which makes it ideal for such applications

    TPV rubber plays an important role in automotive interior parts, tires, under the hood applications, exterior, and chassis.

    2. Building & Construction

    The thermoplastic vulcanisate compound has great weathering properties and durability making it perfect for building and construction applications like pipes & fittings, glazing seals, waterproofing membranes, decorative and fabric coatings, and wall coverings, etc.

    3. Appliances

    The lightweight capabilities of thermoplastic vulcanisate can reduce manufacturing and labour costs for manufacturers. TPV plastic is often used to make interior and exterior parts for appliances like washing machines, dishwashers, ovens, microwaves, hair-dryers, and shavers.

    4. Agriculture

    Resistance to aggressive fluid ad a good compression set make TPV plastic ideal for manufacturing pipe seals and other fluid-contact products.


    what is Santoprene™  

    Santoprene™ is a high-performance TPV brand owned, produced, and supplied by ExxonMobil Chemical Company, based in the United States. The word “Santoprene” was trademarked in the year 1977. It is the most popular and widely known TPV brand in North America. Its high-performance nature makes it compatible or applications in automotive, industrial goods, and consumer products.

    Key Benefits

    1. Fabulous aesthetics with strength and flexibility
    2. Sustainable benefits like weight reduction sustained manufacturing and recycling compared to thermoset rubber (TSR) or ethylene propylene diene polymethylene backbone (EPDM) rubber.

    Differences Between TPV and TPE 

    TPV is a stable elastomer made by mixing EPDM + dynamically vulcanized PP.
    A material made by blending thermoplastic rubber and other auxiliary materials
    Non-toxic, environmentally friendly, doesn’t contain nitrite and heavy metals, and can be recycled to achieve sanitation standards for coping with SGS certification and EU ROHS norms.
    Non-toxic, environmentally friendly, doesn’t contain carcinogenic substances, and can be recycled to achieve food sanitation standards.
    Slight changes in hardness can be seen in varied temperatures, ideal temperature range of – -30 ºC ~ 120ºC
    Slight changes in hardness can be seen in varied temperatures, ideal temperature range of – -30 ºC ~ 80ºC.
    The Shore hardness is 5A in the temperature range of -20 ºC ~ 40ºC, which is much better than PVC and EPDM materials.
    The Shore hardness is 4A in the same temperature range.
    Good aging resistance
    Good aging resistance
    Good weathering resistance
    High Tearing strength

                   Fascinating Read – What is LDPE Material? | The Complete Guide


    What is the difference between EPDM and TPV?

    But TPV and EPDM have their pros and cons, EPDM rubber has limited colour options but provides better abrasion resistance. It also boasts a higher heat resistance TPV (160°C vs. 100°C). On the other hand, TPV offers greater design flexibility and lower fabrication costs for intricate shapes and designs.

    What is the difference between TPV and PETG?

    If we compare both of them side by side, PETG is more flexible and durable. On the other hand, TPV is not as dense as PETG. In terms of chemical resistance, TPV is a good choice, and PETG is an excellent choice.

    What is the difference between TPV and PLA?

    TPV and PLA have some subtle differences. PLA is more environmentally friendly and compostable. It is easier to print and can prove to be an ideal material for beginners. TPV is good for molding flexible parts that need to be able to return to their originals State.

    What is the difference between TPV and TPO?

    TPO is an abbreviation for thermoplastic polyolefin, which means thermoplastic elastomer material with polyolefin added. On the other hand, TPV is short for thermoplastic vulcanisate. TPV has a better heat resistance and tensile strength elastomeric physical properties and TPO is known for its robust chemical and impact resistance.

    What is the difference between TPE vs TPV?

    TPE, or Thermoplastic Elastomers, and TPV, or Thermoplastic Vulcanizates, are both parts of the thermoplastic family, but they have different chemical properties. TPV rubber can be considered a variant of rubber that is similar to EPDM in terms of performance and responsiveness.

    Moreover, TPE is known for its good processability and robust chemical resistance. On the other hand, TPV is known for its durability and thermal resistance.

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    The Takeaway

    Thus, was my take on TPV material. I have kept this piece short as I don’t think enough development has been made on TPV compounds.

    Thanks for reading. Kindly post your reviews and thoughts in the comment box.

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