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Thermoset Plastics: The Basic Facts

Overview Thermoset plastics have been in use for nearly 100 years and continue to provide reliable service to a number of industries, including aerospace, automotive manufacturing, electronics and others. Thermoset plastics are strong and heat resistant, making them ideal for several applications. Understanding their basic properties will help you determine whether thermosets are right for your needs.

Thermosets: A Brief History • Thermoset plastic was developed in 1906 by Belgian chemist Leo Baekeland. • Baekeland developed the plastic by combining phenolic resin, formaldehyde and heat. • Early uses of Baekeland’s discovery included kitchenware, toys and electronics. • Further refinements expanded the usefulness of thermosets and allowed them to be used in many industrial applications.

Why Thermosets? Thermoset plastics have a number of unique properties that make them ideal for uses in various industry. Thermosets are: -

Heat resistant. Corrosion resistant. Sturdy High strength to weight ratio

How Thermoset Laminates Are Made Thermoset laminates are thermoset plastics made by combining plastics with other materials to increase their strength. The graphic below illustrates the manufacturing process: A-stage



uncured raw stage

semi-cured stage

cured stage

Common Base Materials For Thermoset Laminates A variety of materials can form the base materials for thermoset laminates, including: -

Canvas Paper Linen Glass Graphite

Thermosets Are Versatile Thermoset plastics are easy to craft into the components your company needs for various parts. These plastics can be: • Milled • Drilled • Turned • Sawed • Sheared • Punched • Sanded

Industries Using Thermosets Thermoset plastics are used in a variety of industries, thanks to their strength, heat resistance and versatility. Industries using thermosets include: Electronics Automotive Transport Chemical Utilities

Electrical Medical Aviation Computer Textile

Machinery Metal Finishing Aerospace Home Appliance Semi-Conductors

How Thermosets Are Used Thermosets are used in a variety of components, where their strength and heat resistance are valued. Some common applications include uses in: Switches Coils Panels Boards Gaskets

Generators Fuses Sockets Vanes Arc Shields

Gaskets Transformers Condensers Washers Bus Bars

About Accurate Plastics With more than three decades in the business, Accurate Plastics has built a hard-earned reputation for providing clients with quality thermoset plastic products. Our company can work with you to determine how thermosets can meet the insulation or other needs of your products and provide strong, sturdy materials you can depend upon. To learn more, visit

Thermoset Plastics: The Basic Facts  
Thermoset Plastics: The Basic Facts | Thermoset plastics are widely used in manufacturing and other industries. Developed a century ago, engineers contin...