Ethylene-propylene copolymers (EPDM) continue to be one of the most widely used and fastest growing synthetic rubbers.
EPDM elastomer compounds are widely used in many automotive and industrial hose products, taking advantage of their outstanding thermal and oxidative stability, and their excellent chemical resistance to polar organic and aqueous inorganic fluids. Higher under-hood temperatures (as a result of lower hood lines), reduced air flow within the engine area, and turbo chargers have brought about the need for greater heat-resistant compounds for items such as coolant, emission, brake hoses and air ducts.
Although EPDM elastomers have been commercially available for 50 years, advancements in the area of catalyst and process technology have made it possible to design polymers with tailored properties to meet the increasingly demanding market requirements.
In this paper we will review the performance of a recently commercialized EPDM elastomer grade particularly suitable for hose applications. Our studies indicate that this new grade offers an improved balance of processing, mechanical and elastic properties for automotive hose applications.