Characteristics of Acrylic Plastic

By Allan Robinson

Acrylic plastic may be any plastic derived from acrylic compounds such as acrylic acid or methacrylic acid. They generally have similar properties and are commonly used in Plexiglas, lacquer and adhesives.



Transparency

Acrylic plastic is extremely transparent and transmits 92 percent of white light. This is equal to the transparency of the finest optical glass.

Impact Resistance

Acrylic sheets (Plexiglas) have six to 17 times the impact resistance of ordinary glass, depending on the specific preparation. Plexiglas also breaks into relatively dull pieces compared to glass.

Weather Resistance

Acrylic plastic is highly resistant to variations in temperature and humidity, making it useful in outdoor applications.

Chemical Resistance

Acrylic plastic is highly resistant to inorganic acids and bases but can be dissolved by organic substances, especially petroleum products.

Combustibility

Acrylic plastic is combustible and will self-ignite at approximately 860 degrees Fahrenheit. It will burn with an open flame at about 560 degrees Fahrenheit.

About the Author

Allan Robinson has written numerous articles for various health and fitness sites. Robinson also has 15 years of experience as a software engineer and has extensive accreditation in software engineering. He holds a bachelor's degree with majors in biology and mathematics.