Compound Development

Smithers Rapra develops compounds for both plastics and rubbers, working with clients across a wide range of industry sectors including: automotive, medical, industrial, transport and consumer goods.

You can use our compound and product development expertise to help you meet an existing specification, optimise an existing compound or develop a material for a novel application for which there is only the broad outline of a material specification.

Bespoke Compound Development

Our formulation abilities cover a broad range of polymers for a large variety of products. We have developed rubber and plastic compounds for material suppliers, product manufacturers and designers.

Compound development can be targeted at meeting an existing specification, optimising an existing compound, or at developing a material for a novel application for which there is only the broad outline of a material specification.

Using our in-house compounding and material test facilities, trial compound batches can be designed, manufactured and tested to ensure that they meet your precise requirements.

Rubber and plastics are normally compounded with many different additives. These additives include fillers, plasticisers, process aids, vulcanising agents, accelerators, and protective agents. The choice of which type of ingredient to use, and its level, can exert an enormous influence on the final properties of the compound, and its long term durability. An incorrect choice of ingredient for a given application can lead to premature failure, and hence the methods used to compound a rubber or plastic are as important as selecting the correct polymer type for an application. Our technologists will work to ensure the ideal formulation for your needs.

Smithers Rapra has a wealth of knowledge and experience in plastic and rubber compounding and material development – and has been providing solutions to complex issues for over 90 years.

Material Trials and Prototype Evaluation

Once a suitable compound has been developed for an application, Smithers Rapra can supply trial lots of the material for evaluation in the factory-environment and for the manufacture of prototypes. Samples can then be prepared for testing and comparison made against the standard formulation or the product requirements.  Testing can be as basic or comprehensive as agreed and results evaluated.  Initial formulations can then be adjusted if required. 

The compounding equipment for plastics is very flexible. A range of gravimetric feeders, side feeders and liquid addition pumps make almost any configuration possible.

The internal mixing equipment for rubber is capable of making small scale batches avoiding scrap materials and time.

Benefits of Bespoke Material Development
  • Complete ownership and control of your own formulation
  • Independent advice to achieve optimum material performance and processing
  • Optimisation of existing compounds to achieve better performance and durability
  • Ability to change your product manufacturer without the need to change or develop a new compound
  • No need to tie up valuable staff and in-house resources on material development

Contact us today to find out how our expert team of technologists can help with bespoke compound development.