PMC Metallic Stearates for Plastics

Metallic stearates are metal salts of long-chain fatty acids, including aluminum, calcium, magnesium, and zinc.
They provide various performance benefits and formulation properties such as:
  • Lubrication and mold release properties
  • Water repellency and gelation
  • Stabilization and foam inhibition

Metallic Stearates for Plastics:

Fatty acid metal salts play an essential role in the plastics industry. The combination of lubricity, hydrophilicity, and melt point allows metal soaps to be used in several applications. They are primarily used in plastics as lubrication aids, mold release agents, or acid scavengers. They are also used in plastics melt processing to optimize the production output and to produce finished articles with smoother surfaces.


Applications of Metallic Stearates by Resin Type:

Calcium Stearates:

Calcium stearates are used as catalyst neutralizers or lubricants in polypropylene formulations. They are available in fine grind (FG) and fused forms depending on the particle size required. Precipitated versions provide finer particle sizes and are used in specialized polypropylene uses such as thin fibers and films. Calcium stearates are excellent for use in polyolefins and polypropylenes.

Zinc Stearates:

Zinc stearates are used in expandable polystyrenes to provide uniform cell nucleation. They are also excellent for use as lubricants in urea- and melamine-formaldehyde resin formulations. Zinc stearates are also used in fiber-reinforced polyesters for their lubricity and dust-on anti-blocking properties.

Magnesium Stearates:

Magnesium stearates are used in plastic applications such as lubricants and release agents. They provide excellent performance in the extrusion and molding of acrylonitrile butadiene styrenes (ABS) and styrene acrylonitriles (SAN) polymers. They also function as anti-tacking agents in uncured rubber stock applications.

Aluminum Stearates:

Aluminum stearates are available in compositions ranging from tristearate through distearate to monostearate. The tri-soap has the lowest aluminum metal content and the highest free fatty acid content. Aluminum stearates can be used as gelling plasticizers in vinyl plastigels. They can also be used as lubricants in polycarbonate formulations.


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