Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (NMR) Analysis of Polymers

Polymer characterisation by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (NMR) provides detailed structural information for product development and QC

Polymer characterisation by Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy (NMR) provides detailed structural information for product development and quality control considerations (QC).

Expert evaluation of polymers by specialist techniques is essential in order to ensure product integrity and for quality control demands.

Intertek scientists have significant NMR expertise, providing advanced and routine analytical support for polymer-related research and testing projects. Expertise includes polymer characterisation, development of polymer process chemistry and product development.

We provide polymer NMR analysis to evaluate monomer types, levels and distribution (block or random), chain branching, sequencing, Polymer tacticity, molecular weight (MW), end groups, structure and co-monomer ratios.

Our experts' NMR analysis of polymers typically includes:

Polyethylene (HDPE, LDPE, LLDPE), Ethylene and Propylene Copolymers,
Polypropylene, Poly Acetates, Poly Acrylates and Polyesters,
Polyisobutene, Polyalkylene Glycols,
Phenolic Resins, Poly Silioxanes,
Polyurethanes, Polyimides,
PET, PEEK, Polysulphones, Polyketones

Our experts also analyse polymers for packaging materials.

Intertek's NMR team possess extensive expertise within polymer and plastic characterisation, composition and contamination. Please contact us to discuss your specialist requirements.

 

Our experts provide identification of unknown polyethylene (PE) polymers by NMR, which can be identified by NMR chain branching analysis.

13C NMR can be used to determine the nature of an unknown polyethylene (HDPE, LDPE, and LLDPE) and can identify and quantify the types of branching present.

An LDPE (Low Density Polyethylene) contains a number of different types of branches (methyl, ethyl, butyl, pentyl and hexyl). An LLDPE (Linear Low Density Polyethylene), prepared from ethylene and hexane-1 which contains predominately butyl branching. LLDPE is more linear than its LDPE namesake but has higher numbers of shorter branches largely made by copolymerisation with alpha olefin such as butene, hexene or octene with ethylene.

Intertek has a wide range and in-depth knowledge for identifying components of the most commonly recycled plastics which is routinely analysed by NMR, including NIAS. It is an invaluable analytical tool to determine the composition of recycled materials, either as reclaim or as final product, particularly in the manufacture of polyester-based materials.

A selection of the common polymers routinely analysed include: Polyesters - including PET and PEN; Polyolefines - HDPE, LDPE, LLDPE; PVC and Styrene based polymers.

 
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