Understanding The Differences Between PFA And PTFE

May 30, 2016 by  
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Ask anyone what fluoropolymers are, and they wouldn’t be aware. However, replace that with ‘Teflon’, and most people think of the material that keeps food from sticking to pans.Scott5

What may actually come off as surprising is that Teflon isn’t the only fluoropolymer there is. There are several different types of fluoropolymers, PTFE and PFA being among the most popular ones.

Perfluoroalkoxy (PFA Tubing)

PFA tubing has quite similar properties to PTFE tubing, which is a widely used form of Teflon. The primary difference between both the fluoropolymers is that PFA can be melted and processed. This can be done through traditional mold injections or other techniques.

Due to its significant chemical inertness properties, flexibility and transparency, PFA is used as a tubing option for corrosive substances and handling critical procedures. PFA tubing is also used in the form of sheet linings for chemical processing equipment.

Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE Tubing)

PTFE is a synthesized polymer that most people know as Teflon. It is a fluorocarbon compound which was accidentally discovered by Roy Plunkett. The standout feature of PTFE is that it is hydrophobic.Scott5

This means water and other materials cannot stick to it. The high electronegativity of fluorine also makes up for a significantly low coefficient of friction.

PTFE is largely used as a non-stick coating for cookware alongside as a coating for pipes and tubes that transport reactive materials. PTFE may also be used as lubricant in machinery to minimize erosion of solid parts working together.

The Differences

When it comes to tubing, PFA is considered superior to PTFE due to its flexibility. However, PFA has a shorter flex life than PTFE. PFA maintains a transparency under extreme temperatures of up to 500 degree Fahrenheit, while PTFE is milky white up to the same temperature and is also considered more resistant to heat.

The clearly differentiating factors between both are PFA’s electrical properties. While PFA holds quite similar dissipation factor to PTFE, it has up to four times the dielectric strength of PTFE.

It is important to realize that Teflon has more than just one form like PTFE and PFA. Both the fluoropolymers possess specific qualities that make them practical solutions for different applications.

However, the quest for the right solution for your needs doesn’t end here. You need to partner with a reliable fluoropolymer provider that can cater to your specific preferences and applications. Get in touch with us to learn more about how our products can meet your requirements.

Common Industrial Applications Of PFA Tubing

May 27, 2016 by  
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Perfluoroalkoxy tubing or PFA tubing is a fluoropolymer that is the perfect combination of the pros of FEP and PTFE tubing. PFA tubing allows users to benefit from the qualities of both these fluoropolymers.

PFA tubing was initially introduced as an improved version of traditional types of fluoropolymer tubing, which is also the reason why a large number of companies prefer them for projects that involve extreme temperatures and inertness of chemicals.Scott5

Along with a number of other benefits, PFA tubing has gradually become a viable alternative for stainless steel tubes. Although it can be relatively expensive, it certainly gives a good return on investment in the long run.

Here are a few common industrial uses of PFA tubing:

Biotechnology Sector

PFA tubing is used extensively across a number of biotechnology laboratories, specifically in procedures where fermentation is involved. The nonreactive nature of PFA tubing makes it perfect to transport materials between fermentation containers and storage tanks.

In addition to this, the transparent form of this tubing also allows for proactive monitoring of the flow, material deposits and other issues.

Pharmaceuticals

As the most important factor in the pharmaceutical industry is quality control, this makes reliable tubing that can preserve the efficacy of materials even more significant. PFA tubing’s qualities like chemical inertness make it the best choice to transport materials like ultra purified water.

On the other hand, the chemical inactiveness also comes in handy when transporting corrosive materials like sulfuric acid or nitric acid.Scott5

Microelectronic Devices

Many microelectronic device manufacturers as well semiconductor manufacturers rely on PFA tubing for the same qualities that pharmaceuticals do – its ability to preserve liquids. These manufacturers use highly pure solvents for procedures and PFA tubing’s chemical inertness helps ensure that it wouldn’t affect the results.

Food And Beverages

PFA’s significantly high purity levels also make it a practical solution for beverage and food processing companies. The tubing maintains the taste, smell and consistency of food materials being transported through.

Furthermore, PFA tubing’s ability to retain its structural integrity at temperatures up to 500 degree Fahrenheit makes it a logical solution for transportation of foods and drinks.

These are merely a few industrial applications of our PFA tubing products. Are you looking for reliable Teflon PFA tubing? Check out our collection of products and feel free to get in touch for more information. We offer a wide variety of products to suit your needs.