PRAXIS - Plastic Applications

How long have plastics been around?

We can no longer imagine life without plastics. During the 1950s/1960s, the material was considered to be the material of boundless possibilities and it started to move into people's everyday lives. They were delighted with the first colorful household goods made of plastic that came from America. Even the horrendously expensive silk stockings available at the time were replaced by affordable nylons. Iron-free shirts made of artificial fibres relieved the burden on housewives and went easy on the family budget. Plastic products became affordable, easy-care and almost indestructible mass-produced goods. The versatility, colourfulness, and durability of this modern post-war material stood for the attitude to life of a whole generation.

As an independent material group plastics have a young history compared with metals and ceramics. The first formula for the production of a plastic material was noted in the year 1530 when casein was gained from goat's cheese. The subsequent centuries
provide regular examples of the transformation of existing natural products into plastics.
The industrial use of plastics did not begin until the beginning of the 20th century, however. Since then, its technological and economic importance has been increasing
all the time. This is mainly due to two factors:
1. Raw materials for the production of plastics can be gained from crude oil and/or biomass at low cost and are available world-wide.
2. The large variety of plastics available allows a broad range of properties and offers tailor-made solutions for different applications.
Other materials such as steel, non-ferrous metals, concrete, wood, glass, ceramics etc. are being replaced more and more often by plastics. Increasingly efficient products are available on the market and accompany our everyday lives, e.g. in the fields of transport, logistics, and traffic, leisure and sport, medicine and health, as well as communication.

The plastic age has only just begun. New possibilities and new variants on these materials are being discovered every day. Their development potential is nowhere near being exhausted. If manufacturers manage to make the production process independent
of crude oil, and optimise recycling ability and mechanical properties, plastics will rightly be known as the material of the 21st century. The consistent use and further development in the sense of the comprehensive sustainability of plastics is the great challenge of the future.
Plastics PRAXIS - Click or tap on the below image to view and download the PDF file.

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