Also commonly referred to as Ultra-High Molecular Weight, UHMW is a particular type of polyethylene that has been engineered for superior performance in a vast array of different types of applications. Because of its incredible strength and durability, UHMW is employed in a host of different machining applications – particularly for those components that are necessary for commercial and industrial environments.
Even though UHMW is technically a plastic, it is engineered via a number of techniques that are usually employed with metals. All told, UHMW brings with it a wide range of different benefits – all of which are worth a closer look.
The Power of UHMW: Breaking Things Down
By far, one of the biggest advantages that UHMW materials bring with them has to do with the low moisture absorption that they’ve become known for. UHMW has an absorption rate of less than 0.01%, making it an ideal solution for any application that will coexist with high levels of moisture or even humidity.
Another major benefit of working with UHMW comes by way of the noise reduction properties these materials are famous for. Not only do UHMW components naturally generate less noise by their very nature, but they’re also known for creating less friction when coming into contact with other materials as well.
Self-lubrication is also a big part of why so many customers choose UHMW materials for their desired applications, something that is made possible due to their unique molecular structure. Because of this, UHMW materials can resist wear and abrasion incredibly well – all while offering a high impact strength that you would be hard-pressed to find through other options.
Speaking of durability, UHMW is also known for its incredible corrosion resistance – something that few alternatives are able to match. This makes these materials ideal for applications that would see them come into direct contact with any corrosive chemicals, with certain types of acids being a chief example.
UHMW is also nothing if not flexible – meaning that there are a wide range of options for you to choose from depending on your needs. Enhanced Conductivity ULTREX UHMW/PE, for example, is created by adding a superconductive carbon black to a base resin that lowers the surface resistivity by anywhere from 105 – 109.
Hi-Temp ULTREX UHMW/PE offers an incredibly high continuous operating temperature of almost 275 degrees Fahrenheit. This is true, all while allowing it to still offer excellent chemical resistance and incredible tolerance to wear, abrasion and other types of issues that you’re likely to encounter.
Lubricated ULTREX UHMW/PE brings with it an additional lubricity in the form of a continuously regenerating surface film. In addition to offering excellent dimensional stability, this also achieves the benefits of exceptional wear resistance, as well as a surface that isn’t oily to the touch under normal conditions. Not only that, but any dimensional changes that you need to make given your end application are entirely inconsequential and all other desirable properties are not affected in any way, shape or form.
All of this is to say that if you had to make a list of some of the most important materials available to organizations like yours today, UHMW would undoubtedly be right at the top. Given benefits like these, it’s easy to see why it’s become so popular with so many over the last decade in particular.
If you’d like to find out more information about the major benefits of working with UHMW materials, or if you just have any additional questions that you’d like to discuss with someone in a bit more detail, please don’t delay – contact the team at Spiratex today.