Styrene-Acrylonitrile (SAN) Resins

Styrene-Acrylonitrile (SAN) Resins

Acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (ABS) and styrene-acrylonitrile (SAN) resins are plastics that can be compounded with various additives to create special properties, making them versatile and attractive for various end-use applications. Both are produced in different grades with a significant variety of properties, so plastic processors can choose a specific grade for a specific application. In ABS, there is a commodity end of the market (basic, general-purpose material) as well as a specialist end (blends with polycarbonate or methyl methacrylate, for instance) that offers high-performance grades with special characteristics. Many ABS/SAN producers (in the specialist areas) provide technical sales support because of the nature of the products.

SAN resins are produced by copolymerization of styrene and acrylonitrile, and ABS resins by either taking the SAN copolymer and adding polybutadiene or using a mass continuous process, leaving out the SAN step. It is often difficult to separate ABS and SAN in terms of plant capacity and actual production, but Chemical Market Analytics attempts to do so. Conversion factors used for acrylonitrile to ABS/SAN are in the range of 0.25–0.30 tons acrylonitrile to one ton ABS/SAN.

SAN is transparent and is used widely in the production of cigarette lighters, plastic drinking glasses, instrument lenses (automotive and other), refrigerator parts, cosmetic packages, ice buckets and jugs, fans, refrigerator shelving, medical equipment, light and reflector moldings, and other such uses.


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