Wondering if your custom tubing should be lined with FEP or PTFE? While both materials have great chemical compatibility, other properties should be taken into consideration when evaluating which is best for your specific project. NETT is here to help you decide which materials work best with your application.
FEP (Fluorinated Ethylene Propylene) is optically clear in appearance, has great lubricity, is more flexible than PTFE, has a low coefficient of friction compared to ETFE, HDPE, and Pebax®, and can be easily re-molded into complex profiles. Unlike PTFE which requires special processing equipment, FEP is melt processable which allows for long lengths and continuous manufacturing to be utilized. It is ideal for multi and single durometer requirements and is EtO and autoclave sterilizable. FEP is also typically more cost effective than PTFE.
PTFE (Polytetrafluoroethylene) is translucent in appearance, good for thin wall applications, and is slightly more rigid than FEP. Properties include being nonreactive and hydrophobic, with a very low coefficient of friction, excellent lubricity, and good insulating properties. PTFE is EtO and autoclave sterilizable but cannot be sterilized using Gamma or E-beam technologies. It requires etching and is typically the highest cost option.
Other materials like ETFE and PFA may also be considered for tube linings. ETFE offers superior tensile strength and stiffness with good lubricity, and is Gamma, EtO, and autoclave sterilizable. PFA offers similar lubricity and clarity as FEP, but with the added benefit of excellent chemical resistance, toughness, and higher service temperatures. PFA is both EtO and autoclave sterilizable. Alternatively, HDPE offers both good adhesion and lubricity, and can be Gamma sterilized. Pebax® has high material strength and is good for high-pressure applications.
NETT has the capability to line our custom tubing with FEP, ETFE, PFA, HDPE, or Pebax®. In many cases these options perform excellently in the end application, with the benefit of lower overall cost to the project versus PTFE linings. If you are curious and need more information on which material is best for your application, our design engineers are available to guide you to the best options. Contact us today to get started.