Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS)
DescriptionABS is a thermoplastic co-polymer of acrylonitrile and styrene with butadiene extensions. These extensions give ABS a high impact strength which makes it more expensive than polystyrene. Being a co-polymer of styrene it can produce a tinny sound when tapped upon. ABS often has a high gloss. The presence of butadiene extensions makes ABS opaque. Mixing acrylate with the resin pellets makes the final product more transparant.
HistoryABS was patented in 1948 and has been commercially available since 1954.
Production, Application, AppearanceABS granules are processed by injection moulding and extrusion. Due to its high impact strength it used much in the manufacture of toys (Lego, Fischerprice), computer casing and keycaps, suitcases and car bumpers. ABS extruded into a filament is used in 3Dprinting.
Density: 1.03-1.09 g/cm3
Melting point: 220-260 °C
Glass transition temperature: 90-115°C
Identification propertiesCell structure (foam): not applicable
Smell: no characteristic smell
Touch: no characteristic touch
Sound: Rigid = clear. Can sound tinny; film = (?) no characteristic sound
UV-radiation (when clear): not applicable
Polarizing filters (when clear): not applicable
SymptomsYellowing; surface becomes matte; surface becomes rougher; loss of mechanical properties resulting in tears, fractures, embrittlement, stress cracking, soiling.
SusceptibilityUV-radiation: High - ABS discolours rapidly
RecommendationsUV-RADIATION: keep below 10 µW/lm Exclude UV with filters or no-UV light source
LIGHT: 1 just noticeable change in approx. 1 Mlx.h Limit light dose by reducing intensity and exposure time
OXYGEN / OZONE: ambient conditions
TEMP: common indoor conditions 10-30°C
RH: common museum conditions 40-60% RH fluctuations: setpoint ±10% or ±5% when allowing seasonal fluctations between 35-65%"