Plastribution’s involvement in the development and manufacture of an ‘indestructible’ plastic chair, to be used in prison cells across the country, led to its selection as Polymer Distributor of the Year in 2010. The polymer distributor provided support in material selection and testing as well as processing advice.
A tough brief
Plastribution was selected in 2008 as the sole supplier of plastics to the Prison Industries’ seven mould shops throughout the UK based on the strength of its polymer portfolio and technical support. One of the first projects for the distributor to become involved in was the production of an ‘indestructible’cell chair that would be difficult to destroy or break into pieces, awkward to hold or throw, safe-in-use and not provide the opportunity for the concealment of weapons. Finding that most materials were too brittle and were failing tests within 30 seconds, Plastribution was able to recommend Capilene®PP TG50 from Carmel Olefins, a copolymer designed for injection moulding applications requiring optimal impact resistance, used with an Exact™plastomer modifier from ExxonMobil (at 10 percent) to further improve impact strength and flexibility. Using the new material combination, the chair passed all testing (surviving more than five minutes of violent impact testing) and went into production in June 2009. To date not a single product failure has been recorded.
Plastribution key to success
Abdul Majid of the National Offender Management Service is in no doubt the role played by Plastribution in the successful conclusion of a very demanding project: “Plastribution made it possible. They were quick to respond with new alternatives when the initial materials failed, and proposed the innovative solution based on new generation plastomers. Their advice on processing and teamwork approach helped drive the project to its successful completion and confirmed our choice of Plastribution as our sole supplier.”
Photo chair: The ‘indestructible’ prison cell chair is moulded in two sections and joined together using plastic welding.
Capilene® is a registered trademark of Carmel Olefins.
Exact™is a trademark of Exxon Mobil Corporation.