Thermoplastic elastomers (TPe)

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About TPE Material

Thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) are a form of thermoplastic polymers. They are also a class of copolymers, or a physical mix of rubber and plastic polymers, that consist of both thermoplastic and elastomeric properties. TPEs are also referred to as thermoplastic rubber, as it exhibits some of the performance properties of rubber.

TPEs are soft to the touch, so they are ideal for a variety of markets and consumer goods. Furthermore, soft thermoplastic elastomers are easy to mold and extrude onto other TPEs. As a result, they are ideal for soft grips on products as well as sealing rings and bottle cap liners.


Quick Overview

ProcessesLead TimeColorTolerancePriceApplications
3D Printing2-4 Days based on sizeWhite & available in all major colors.FDM - 150 µmLowest in marketStrength & Flexible parts
Injection Molding20-30 DaysWhite & available in all major colors.As low as +/- 0.030 mmQty & Precision dependentHigh strength, Good surface finish.

Design Recommendations

Services NameMax SizeMin SizeMin ThicknessUndercutsRadii Depth
For 3D PrintingMax Part Size: 500x500x500 mmMin Hole size : 1 mmMin Wall Thickness: 1 mmMin Feature Size : 3 mmRecommended fillet & Chamfer angles : > 45 Deg
For MoldingMax Part Size: 500x500x500 mmMin Hole size : 0.5 mmMin Wall Thickness: 0.5 mmRibs should be 40-60% the thickness of outer walls and should still maintain draftMinimum draft angle of 0.5°, or up to 5°, for faces with medium textures

Frequently Asked Questions

TPE can be more recyclable, flexible, and softer than TPU. However, they do offer lower resistance to abrasion, grease/oils, chemicals and high and low temperatures.

Thermoplastic elastomers (TPE), sometimes referred to as thermoplastic rubbers, are a class of copolymers or a physical mix of polymers (usually a plastic and a rubber) that consist of materials with both thermoplastic and elastomeric properties.

ACIDS (excluding carboxylic acids), Alcohol, METHANOL and ETHANOL (moderate concentrations) – GOOD

Bases, Tensides, Oil in water – EXCELLENT

Carboxylic acids, Fatty food, Water in oil, Aliphatic hydrocarbons, Polar hydrocarbons, Oil – SWELLS

3D printed TPE parts are not recommended to use in water resistant application.

Where as injection molded parts are water resistant.



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