Nitrile Butadiene Rubber (NBR), also known as Buna-N, is a synthetic rubber copolymer of acrylonitrile (ACN) and butadiene. NBR exhibit excellent physical and chemical properties. It has advantages such as resistance to oils, chemicals, abrasion and fatigue. NBR finds major applications in glove manufacturing and the automobile industry. Ability of NBR to withstand wide temperature ranges from -40°C to +120°C makes it suitable for extreme automobile applications. Powder rubber refers to a particle size of 1.0 mm with advantages such as easy storage and transportation. Powdered form of NBR with all NBR properties finds major applications in PVC modification, automobiles, friction materials, gaskets and adhesives, among others.
Currently, the NBR powder market stands at more than 70 kilo tons globally of which, unorganized market accounts for a significant share. Linear and cross-linked are the two major types available in the global NBR powder market. However, there are products with semi-cross linked characteristics. These have applications similar to those of cross-linked products. Cross-linked NBR powder is the major type, accounting for more than 80% of the global market in 2012.
Cross-linked NBR powder is majorly used in PVC modification applications. It is also used to modify resins such as acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) and phenolic resins. They provide flexibility and impact resistance in thermoplastic formulations. Linear NBR powder is used in various applications such as gaskets, hoses and seals. Automobile is another major application market for NBR powder. NBR powder is used in interior moldings, weather strips, auto interior skins and friction materials. Friction materials is expected to be the fastest growing segment due to rising demand for disc pads, clutch facings, brake linings and railway brake blocks, among others. NBR powder in frictional material further raises shock and heat fading resistance, and decreases hardness. Buildings, footwear and consumer goods are other key applications of NBR powder.
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