3.2. Polymer Materials
3.2.1. Advantages and Typical Properties
Polymers are the most common materials in molding processes. The use of polymers in molding macroscopic and microscopic structures is based on several advantages and properties of polymers:
- Compared to glass, polymers have a low molding temperature. Molding temperatures are in the range between approximately 80°C (e.g., polystyrole) up to 340°C (e.g., PEEK) for high-temperature polymers. The reduction of molding temperature results in a decrease of heating and cooling time and finally effects shorter process cycle times.
- A large variety of polymers with different thermal, optical, and chemical properties allows one to find the most appropriate polymer material for a specific ...