EPS Applications

Expandable Polystyrene is a thermoplastic material ,in spherical bead shape, which contains Pentane as blowing agent, and is obtained as a result of the polymerization of styrene monomer. 

The transformation process of expandable Polystyrene is accomplished with water vapor and the volume of the beads reaches 40 times the original one within less than a minute.


MONOCELL ® as Raw Material vs Expanded Polystyrene  

“Expanded Polystyrene (EPS)” Production Process 

Products produced by MONOCELL ® can be used in building and construction, packaging and many other applications.

 

There are five production phases , in the “Expanded Polystyrene” process, by using the MONOCELL ® as raw material:

  • Pre-expansion

    Every Polystyrene granule is expanded by being exposed to steam in order to make  larger grains consisting of series of closed cells.
  • Conditioning

    After the expansion, the beads are still containing condensed vapor and pentane gas in small quantities. After being cooled down, air replaces partially the above components and diffuses gradually into the pores.
  • Molding

    These beads are molded in order to form boards, blocks or products in other shapes. The mold serves to shape the desirable product and to retain the pre-foam. Steam is used in order to promote expansion again and causes the fusion of every single bead with its neighbors. Thus, a homogenous product is formed.
  • Shaping

    After a short cooling period, the molded block is taken off the machine and after an additional conditioning, it can be cut into desire shapes by using a hot wire element or other appropriate techniques.
  • Post-production-processing

    Finished product can be laminated with other coverings i.e. foils, plastics, roof felts, fiber-board or roof or wall cladding materials. 

User advantages

  1. 1
    Excellent Thermal Insulation

    EPS is constituted 98% from air and therefore it is an excellent thermal insulant.  

  2. 2
    Proved Acoustic Insulator

    It absorbs sound, both impact sound in floating floors and airborne sound for walls. 

  3. 3
    Resistance to Moisture

    EPS is resistant to degradation by water.

  4. 4
    Lifetime Durability

    EPS is not decomposed. Therefore it ensures lifetime durability.

  5. 5
    Flexible Mechanical Features

    Due to the flexible production process, the mechanical feature of EPS is compatible with almost all applications. 

  6. 6
    Versatility

    EPS is producible in almost all shapes or sizes and is compatible with a wide range of materials.

  7. 7
    Cost Effective

    Compared to other insulation materials EPS provides the best price/performance ratio. 

  8. 8
    Easy in Transportation

    EPS is almost light as air, so it ensures fuel saving in transport. 

  9. 9
    Easy to Install

    EPS is lightweight, practical, safe and it is easy to handle and to install. 

EPS is preferred and used for building and construction applications basically as follows:

  • For Insulation Applications with its low thermal conductivity coefficient 
  • For Panel Applications as thermal insulation filler for sandwich roof and facade 
  • For Decorative Applications with its easy molding and process facility 
  • For Foundation Applications thanks to its  light weight, which avoid additional load to the building and ensuring high thermal performance 
  • For Geofoam Applications under the scope of ground improvement chastening by reducing the maintenance, the application cost and the application time.

The 40% of world’s energy is consumed in buildings. The 70% of the energy consumption in buildings is intended for heating and cooling. The fact that buildings could be heated with less fuel would decrease the released greenhouse gases.  The insulation application in buildings, purposing a reduction of the fuel consumed for heating purposes, would ensure an energy saving of averagely 50 %. Consequently, the released greenhouse gases would also decrease in a rate of approximate 50 %. Therefore, the thermal insulation of the buildings is critical for a sustainable future.

In order to evaluate the utilization of expandable polystyrene (EPS) in the insulation applications, it is required to consider its quality, stability, resistance to earthquake, and its fire protection properties. Thermal insulation boards made of Monocell ® are in compliance with EN 13163 and maintain the properties of the raw materials suitable for insulation applications of buildings.

In general, when EPS boards are placed between double layer sandwich panels, such as between galvanized and aluminum metallaminas, an integral, economic and light weight product is carried out with perfect thermal insulation characteristics.

EPS filled panels provide the manufacturer advantages i.e. light weight carrying capacity, effective thermal insulation, water and water vapor resistance, long term use with less maintenance. In general, EPS with densities of 16-22 kg/m3 is used for the production of sandwich panels used for roofs and facade systems.

Today, jamb and external facade decorations made of EPS materials are used for most of dwelling type buildings. These products may be categorized according to their utilization types on the facades : i.e. jamb to window edges, under-window sill, layer molding between layers, clapboard or sliding as facade covering boards, plasterboard as headstone (cornerstone), column heads, buttress, corner stone and interior facade decorations, cincture groups, ceiling covering, suspending ceiling and lamp hub.

External facade decorations made of EPS products provide a rich product range with many different design possibilities.

Expanded Polystyrene (EPS) developed as alternative for filling in foundations, is preferred. EPS blocks ensure insulation in the ribbed slab systems, and they can be used for filling purposes as they are light. The EPS filling blocks are not included to the static calculations, as they have no carrying properties.

The light road filling material Geofoam is used as alternative to ground improvement chastening methods. The density of Geofoam is approx. hundred times lower compared to vertical load compressed ground fillings. Thus, in combination with its special mechanical properties, the total sinking is decreased significantly when Geofoam fillings are used.

By using the light construction material EPS, during road construction, the increase of the surface pressure is prevented. Thus, no settling in the road structure will occur while a structure style is obtained.

Apart of the applications mentioned, expanded EPS in granule form is also used in the concrete production, giving a light finished product, with positive properties in thermal insulation and less heat bridges. Thus, EPS is also suitable for insulated light plaster applications.

The utilization of EPS in the packaging sector is usable for almost entire industry and for all consumer products, so EPS is able to provide all properties expected from a packaging material. Main fields of packaging:

  • Durable Consumer Goods ( white appliances i.e. Refrigerator, Dishwasher and Washing machine) 
  • Electronic Goods (  TV, Stereo , Computer, etc.) 
  • Food Products ( Fruits, Vegetable, Fish and Sea Products, Meat and meat products, milk products) 
  • Tourism sector 
  • Ship Industry 
  • Sanitary Installation Products 
  • Horticulture Sector 
  • Porcelain and Glass Industry 
  • Automotive Industry 
  • Toy Industry

EPS is preferable in the packaging sector due to its closed pore structure,the advantage of being light, its stabilitywithin a narrow limit, its high impact resistance with flexibility and its resistance to cold and moisture. In general, EPS products are intensively preferred by white appliances manufacturers. ΕPS fulfills technical requirements i.e. REACH and RoHS, so is widely used by companies manufacturing electrical-electronic devices.

Apart from all these applications, EPS is one of the most popular materials for pipe insulation, poultry houses and poultry farms, cold air storages, silos and water tanks, and  thermal insulation of jalousie housings.

Considering also EPS’s impact absorbing properties, EPS is used in helmet, baby seat and similar product applications.