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It quickly became one of the most important modern plastics, owing to the low cost of producing large volumes of styrene monomer, the ease of shaping the melted polymer in injection-molding operations, and the optical and physical properties of the material.
Polystyrene foam was formerly made with the aid of chlorofluorocarbon blowing agents—a class of compounds that has been banned for environmental reasons.
As late as 1930 little commercial use had been found for the polymer because of brittleness and crazing (minute cracking), which were caused by impurities that brought about the cross-linking of the polymer chains.This blend, suitable for toys and appliance parts, is marketed as high-impact polystyrene (HIPS).Kent Library offers a wide variety of databases to help with your research.Styrene is polymerized by using free-radical initiators primarily in bulk and suspension processes, although solution and emulsion methods are also employed.The structure of the polymer repeating unit can be represented as: ) groups is key to the properties of polystyrene.