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Expanded Polystyrene Properties and Key Benefits

2020-02-29

Expanded Polystyrene Properties and Key Benefits


EPS is a lightweight material with good insulation characteristics offering benefits such as:

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· Polystyrene is 98% Air


Air is one of the most naturally abundant elements on the planet, so the fact that Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) is 98% air illustrates just how resource-efficient it actually is. To this day EPS remains the lightest packaging material around, although its applications far exceed just packaging as it is utilized for temperature control, weight saving and impact protection.

 

· Expanded Polystyrene has exceptional properties including:


Durability

Shock Absorption

Insulation


· Polystyrene is one of the best insulators on the planet

When seeking cost efficient methods of insulation, EPS should be top of the list. When compared against other materials such as wood, plastics, wool and cardboard, expanded polystyrene is a far superior insulating material.


· The insulation properties of EPS make it a particularly viable material for:


Fish Boxes and Temperature Controlled Packaging

Cavity Wall Insulation

Construction – Insulated Concrete Forms

 

Density (pcf)

Stress @ 10% Compression (psi)

Flexural Strength (psi)

Tensile Strength (psi)

Shear Strength (psi)

1.0

13

29

31

31

1.5

24

43

51

53

2.0

30

58

62

70

2.5

42

75

74

92

3.0

64

88

88

118

3.3

67

105

98

140

4.0

80

125

108

175


· EPS has a thermal conductivity of 0.032(W/mK). This thermal conductivity is maintained for the duration of its lifespan, so once on the wall, you won’t have to replace it further down the line. In terms of building regulations, on a solid wall property, you would need about 90mm of EPS insulation to achieve the required U-value of 0.3(W/mK).

 

· Electrical Properties – The dialectic strength of EPS is approximately 2KV/mm. Molded EPS can be treated with antistatic agents to comply with electronic industry.


· Water Absorption - EPS is not hygroscopic. Even when immersed in water it absorbs only a small amount of water.


· Fire Resistance – EPS is flammable. However, when modified with flame retardants it significantly minimizes the ignitability of the foam and the spread of flames.

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