Interesting things about PVA



1. PVA in everyday life

Before learning about the practicality of PVA plastic in everyday life, we must understand the definition of this useful plastic.

1.1 Definition of PVA plastic

PVA plastic is the abbreviation for Polyvinyl Acetate or is known by many different names such as Polyethnyl Ethanoate, PVAc, PVA.

The chemical formula of PVA resin is (C4H602)n. Simply understand that PVA plastic is essentially an industrial chemical, exists in powder form, is white and is synthesized from Polyvinyl Acetate.

The nature of PVA does not emit an unpleasant scent during the production process and when it becomes the final product. In particular, PVA will have a slightly sweet taste and will not affect consumers' health at all. This is one of the impressive features that increase the popularity and use of PVA plastic.

Besides, PVA adhesive is quite flexible and can be used in many different materials. At the same time, they are also easily replicated in large quantities because the price is not too expensive.

In addition, the chemical structure of PVA plastic has good sustainability and can withstand environmental impacts such as temperature, humidity, climate, etc. Therefore, PVA is also used as a coating on product surfaces to increase adhesion and durability.

Furthermore, PVA's biodegradability is also highly appreciated by experts and manufacturers, which is also the reason why this material is commonly used in the 3D printing or self-healing industry.

A brief overview of the definition of PVA: They are a thermoplastic and non-toxic, biodegradable polymer. In particular, PVA will not be soluble in common organic solvents, instead it can only be combined with water or hot alcohol.

Read more: What is PVA plastic? Everything you need to know

1.2 Analysis of PVA chemical structure

The chemical structure of PVA will include:

  • One main circuit is called Aliphatic.
  • A Carbon chain - Carbon needs additional energy to decompose, this contributes to increasing the decomposition time of PVA.

It can be said that the properties of PVA are directly influenced by its chemical structure. However, these are the perfect properties to create PVA's competitive advantage compared to other materials. Eg:

  • High impact resistance and durability.
  • Stable flexibility and easy to change shape during production.
  • Resistance to heat as well as environmental impacts.
  • Ability to adapt and combine with many different types of plastic additives to increase unique properties.
  • To obtain pure PVA, the most common method is to hydrolyze Polyvinyl Acetate or PVAc for short.

PVAc is dissolved in Methanol in the presence of a basic or acidic catalyst, the acetate group is hydrolyzed to a hydroxyl group.

Next, manufacturers will combine the temperature, time and temperature of the hydrolysis process with Methanol, which will yield PVA at many different degrees of hydrolysis.

1.3 PVA classification

As we all write, the hydrolysis ability of PVA plastic is highly appreciated. Therefore, they are also divided into two types with distinct properties and characteristics. As follows:

Completely hydrolyzed PVA: This type of PVA possesses intramolecular bonds as well as crystalline phase shapes that are very difficult to decompose. Therefore, they will be poorly soluble in cold water. However, in a hot water environment above 70 degrees Celsius, this PVA will break down its H structure and form many strange shapes.

Partially hydrolyzed PVA: On the contrary, this type of PVA dissolves very well in water. The main reason comes from the Acetate groups in the PVA molecular chain, which will hinder the H-bonds between Hydroxyl groups.

In particular, in the case of completely hydrolyzed PVA, they will lose their original chemical and physical properties. Scientists explain that that is the time when the Acetae Hoae phenomenon returns to the aquatic environment.

We can also see that the properties of PVA plastic will also be affected by this chemical structure. Properties related to impact resistance, ductility, and heat resistance will be superior to other materials.

Therefore, PVA is widely used in industry such as plastics, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, construction works, wastewater treatment, ... Right now, EuroPlas will introduce to you the common applications of PVA plastic in everyday life.

2. Some interesting things about PVA

Like other plastic materials, PVA plastic also shows its popularity in industries in addition to its reasonable price. Refer now!

2.1. PVA artificial (Artificial Snow)

PVA plastic can be used as a decoration, which most children love. In particular, this is a symbolic object in European countries at Christmas.We can create snow right in Vietnam with just PVA plastic and in just a few simple steps.

To make artificial snow from PVA plastic, we will combine it with Baking Soda powder and shaving powder. There are only 2 extremely simple steps as follows:

  • Step 1: Mix Baking Soda Powder and Shaving Powder in a 1:1 ratio. For example, if we use 1 tablespoon of Baking Soda, it will dissolve with 1 tablespoon of Shaving powder.
  • Step 2: You add PVA glue and cold water to the mixture of Step 1 at the same time. You need to note that: You add cold water very slowly and must knead continuously throughout the process. You do that until the mixture gradually becomes more spongy. Finally, add a small amount of PVA glue to create an adhesive.

2.2. Slime (Slime Toys)

Next, PVA plastic is also used to create a type of game that is very popular with children. That's Slime. Let's join EuroPlas to see the simplest way to make Slime with PVA material.

If you run out of glue while making Slime, this is a terrible situation and hinders your fun. However, this is an extremely simple, economical, and quick way to make Slime glue with PVA powder.

You need to prepare the following ingredients and tools:

  • 2 Plastic Cups. One cup is used to store Slime glue (Symbolized as Cup A), the other cup is used to store the finished product (Symbolized as Cup B)
  • PVA powder
  • Activador liquid. You can buy this liquid on e-commerce platforms at a fairly cheap price.
  • Rapid-boil electric kettle

The steps are as follows:

  • Step 1: Add PVA powder equal to 1/3 of the volume of Cup A.
  • Step 2: Pour 30 - 40 ml of boiled water into PVA powder. Be careful not to burn your forehead.
  • Step 3: Close the lid of Cup A tightly. Next, wait about 1 minute for the water to warm up and shake Cup A vigorously and evenly for 7 - 8 minutes. This process will help the PVA powder mixture adhere and form glue.
  • Step 4: Once you have the glue mixture, let it rest for 5 - 10 minutes. Then, you proceed to mix the glue mixture with warm water and "Activator" liquid.
  • Step 5: You will knead this mixture evenly for about 7 - 8 minutes. Finally, put the mixture into Cup B and wait for about 2 - 3 days until the mixture turns clear white.

2.3. PVA as fishing bait (Fishing Bait)

Not only used to make children's toy products, PVA is also very well utilized to make professional fishing products and supplies to meet the hobby of men.

Professional fishermen use such PVA nets to hold bait. This mesh bag is used to fix baits and keep them from disintegrating when exposed to water for long periods of time. In particular, PVA mesh bags will store a larger amount of bait, so they are very suitable for hunting large fish.

In particular, mesh bags will not harm the water or soil environment because they can dissolve after 8 - 10 hours in water.

In addition, the bait bag will make the shape of the bait look bigger, which makes it more attractive to big fish and the rate of catching fish also increases.

Usage is also extremely simple. You just need to put enough bait into the mesh bag, tie it tightly and secure it to the hook.

2.4 Use PVA as paint or coating

In the composition of PVA plastic, they contain very volatile organic compounds (VOCs).

Therefore, this is a strong point compared to traditional paints because PVA paint will not affect the environment, air and your health. Besides, PVA paint is also easy to clean and has better natural adhesion than traditional paint.

In particular, PVA is fully utilized in the construction materials industry; it is the only material that can be used to produce self-healing paint. The product line has the function of repairing minor damage on the surface of the material

In addition, PVA has high temperature resistance and durability, making it a good preservative coating for other materials.

2.5 Using PVA in the Health sector

As we all know, PVA has very good biodegradability as well as stable compatibility with other compounds.

The interesting thing here is that medical products made from PVA are compatible with the human body and have the ability to self-digest.

That is why PVA is used to produce contact lenses, medical sutures or tape.

2.6 Biological detergents

PVA also has stable antibacterial properties and ensures safety for consumers' health.

When PVA dissolves in water, it releases molecules and prevents the entry of harmful bacteria. In addition, these molecules also have the ability to break the compound bonds of temporary complex plaques on the surface of the material.

Therefore, PVA is not only used as dishwashing liquid but also as laundry detergent tablets. In particular, they will not accumulate sediment because of their ability to biodegrade over time.

3. Conclusion

Overall, PVA plastic possesses many unique characteristics and properties compared to conventional materials.

Besides, PVA plastic also meets the extremely important criteria of Environment and Health.

PVA plastic is not only safe for consumers' health, but can also biodegrade over time without affecting the surrounding environment.

Moreover, PVA almost possesses all the most basic properties of a plastic material: durability, water solubility, high temperature resistance, adaptability, elasticity and flexibility.

To learn more about PVA plastic and other sustainable plastic products, please consult the EuroPlas knowledge base.

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