Production and characterization of thermoplastic elastomer foams based on the styrene-ethylene-butylene-styrene (SEBS) rubber and thermoplastic material

Kiroglu C., Kızılcan N.

OPEN CHEMISTRY, vol.19, no.1, pp.929-937, 2021 (SCI-Expanded) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 19 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2021
  • Doi Number: 10.1515/chem-2021-0084
  • Journal Name: OPEN CHEMISTRY
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, CAB Abstracts, Veterinary Science Database, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Page Numbers: pp.929-937
  • Istanbul Technical University Affiliated: Yes


Thermoplastic elastomer foams based on styrene-ethylene-butylene-styrene (SEBS)/polypropylene (PP) were produced by using different processing techniques such as extrusion and injection molding to achieve optimized mechanical and thermal properties in terms of strength, elongation, and damping capability. Foaming is a method of introducing gas-filled cells into the material and it is considered an effective way to meet the requirements for higher impact resistance with low density and relatively low hardness. In this study, microspheres were used as a foaming agent and were introduced to the system by using an injection molding machine. They were used in different percentages and ranged from 1 and 3%. They decrease the density of the product thereby lowering the weight and cost. Besides improving damping abilities and decreasing the density, inorganic fillers such as talc, silica, and calcium carbonate were used to increase the mechanical strength, and their effectivity was also investigated. It was observed that a higher amount of foaming agent lowered the density by creating voids in the blend, as expected. The introduction of fillers increases the mechanical properties; however, the density had a negative effect even in the presence of foaming agents. About 3% density reduction can be achieved in the presence of talc and a foaming agent whereas the other fillers had an opposite effect on the density. Accordingly, the impact resistance was affected negatively because of the stiffness of the filler materials, and the highest Izod impact value was 50.2 kJ/m(2). The elastic modulus values for foamed samples and filled with CaCO3, talc, and silica were 808, 681, and 552MPa respectively. Combining foaming and thermoplastic elastomers (TPEs) offers a wide variety of possibilities to new and existing applications. In addition to low hardness and density, foaming provides better damping ability thanks to its morphological structure.