Nitrile butadiene rubber (NBR) which is also commonly referred to as Buna-N is usually produced for hydrocarbons. NBR is widely used in petroleum and natural gas industry. NBR is a form of synthetic rubber, which is a copolymer of butadiene and acrylonitrile.
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NBR is widely used in automobile and aeronautical industries to manufacture fuel/oil hoses and seals. NBR also possesses the ability to withstand a wide range of temperature from -40 degrees Celsius to +107 degree Celsius making it suitable to be used in aeronautical applications. Other applications of NBR include: lab/medical examination gloves, O-rings, gaskets, V belts, printing rollers, synthetic leather, cable jacketing, moulded goods, footwear, sealants, expanded foams, sponges, floor mats, adhesives and sealants.
NBR are considered to have more resistance than the natural rubbers to oils and some chemicals, but are have low strength and flexibility. Gloves made from NBR are three times more puncture resistant than gloves made from natural rubber.
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NBR can also be hydrogenated to form (HNBR) which is commonly used to manufacture o-rings for air conditioners used in automobiles. An improved and modified version of NBR is known as carboxylated nitrile butadiene rubber (XNBR) having higher resistance to tear and abrasion compared to conventional NBR.
2-propenenitrile is made to react to with various other butadiene monomers including 1,2-butadiene and 1,3-butadiene in presence of catalyst in a polymerization vessel. Water acts as the reaction medium within the vessel. The vessel is heated to approximately 30-40 degrees Celsius to promote the polymerization reaction. This process is to produce hot NBR.
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The production of cold NBR also follows the same process. The only difference between hot NBR and cold NBR is the temperature range, cold NBR is produced by heating the vessel to 5-10 degree Celsius. Less branching is formed on polymers under lower temperature.
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