Foundation, Concrete and Earthquake Engineering

Polystyrene (PS)

Polystyrene is an inexpensive and hard plastic. Polystyrene has a long history of evolution behind it. In 1839, a German apothecary called Eduard Simon discovered polystyrene. Eduard Simon isolated the substance from natural resin; however, he did not know what he had discovered.

Polystyrene is a strong plastic created from ethylene and benzine that can be injected, extruded, or blow molded; making it a very useful and versatile manufacturing material. However, do not forget to recycle polystyrene products. You can get more information about Polystyrene at

Model cars and airplanes are made from polystyrene, and it also is made in the form of foam packaging and insulation (Styrofoam is one brand of polystyrene foam). Clear plastic drinking cups are made of polystyrene. So are a lot of the molded parts on the inside of your car, like the radio knobs. Polystyrene is also used in toys, and the housings of things like hairdryers, computers, and kitchen appliances.

Polystyrene is a vinyl polymer. Structurally, it is a long hydrocarbon chain, with a phenyl group attached to every other carbon atom. Polystyrene is produced by free radical vinyl polymerization, from the monomer styrene. It is used primarily as a dielectric material in a wide range of components together with lenses, observation windows, x-ray equipment and radiation detectors.

Polystyrene is hard and brittle and has a density of 1.050 g/cm3. It is represented by the chemical formula, C8H8. Most of the polystyrene properties are as a result of the unique properties of carbon. It is highly flammable and burns with an orange yellow flame, giving off soot, as a characteristic of all aromatic hydrocarbons. Polystyrene, on oxidation, produces only carbon dioxide and water vapor.

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