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Reducing ecological footprint with Tosaf’s dedicated foaming agents

With chemical foaming agents for thermoplastic materials and intensive advice on their selection and use, Tosaf helps users meet the urgent demand from society and legislation for greater sustainability. Foamed plastics reduce the consumption of raw materials, which can also offer cost benefits, and their insulating properties can help reduce the use of energy. Sink marks can be avoided to a large extent, minimizing rejects even if there are high demands on surface quality. At the same time, foaming has no effect on recycling behaviour. Hence, the recyclability of the plastics in the materials cycle is maintained.

Tosaf's foaming agent portfolio includes endothermic and exothermic types with application-specific advantages for a wide range of thermoplastics. For all of them, the production of foams with uniform cell size and consistent material properties requires a great deal of experience in choosing the right foaming agent as well as in process optimization. As a leading manufacturer of additives and colors, Tosaf provides comprehensive support in matching the foaming agent to the plastics and additives used and in optimizing customer-specific foaming processes. In this way, the company helps its customers bring products to market quickly and avoid production problems.

Endothermic, exothermic or both

Endothermic agents absorb energy in the process. They are usually based on sodium bicarbonate, possibly in combination with a weak acid, e.g. citric acid. When exposed to heat, they release carbon dioxide. They are considered safe to use, are approved for food contact, and usually require relatively low temperatures for activation.

In this group, Tosaf offers three main grades that differ in terms of the amount of gas yield and foam characteristics. Accordingly, the applications range from thin-walled films and molded parts with high surface quality such as small parts for the electric and electronics industry as well as PP tapes, to XPS and XPE trays for food packaging as well as small technical parts, to large and thick-walled parts such as waste containers, pallets, and garden furniture.

Exothermic foaming agents release energy in the process and combine a high foaming effect with very good dispersibility. They are usually based on azodicarbonamide. The company also offers tailor-made solutions for the exothermic types, for example for construction foams, non-food contact products as well as sewage pipes. Also available from Tosaf are combined exothermic and endothermic foaming agents in one concentrate. These have been developed for PVC applications such as sheets, profiles and pipes.

Beyond foaming agents, Tosaf's portfolio includes other additives that can contribute to greater sustainability, including antioxidants, moisture and odor absorbers, processing aids and chain extenders.

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