What Is Polystyrene?
Polystyrene is a thermoplastic that is available in two forms. It is a hard, stiff, brilliantly transparent synthetic resin produced by the polymerization of styrene. It is widely employed in the food-service and food packaging industry as rigid trays and containers, disposable eating utensils, and foamed cups, plates, and bowls. It is also used for foam packaging, Petri dishes, and other consumer products. It is also copolymerized, or blended with other polymers, lending hardness and rigidity to a number of important plastic and rubber products.
Crystal polystyrene is pure polystyrene material that is a clear, rigid, and relatively brittle thermoplastic. It is often used for lenses and clear lids for containers. High-impact polystyrene which is often identified by the acronym HIPS is polystyrene with the addition of butadiene (pronounced BYOO-TUH-DAHY’-EEN) rubber. High-impact polystyrene is more pliable than crystal polystyrene and has a slightly translucent appearance that is white in color.
It is used for everything from housewares to model car kits. Polystyrene is commonly used with foaming agents to make packaging materials, drinking cups, and insulation.
The typical brands of polystyrene plastic resin offered by Midwest Resins are: