Fluorinated ethylene propylene (FEP) is a copolymer of hexafluoropropylene and tetrafluoroethylene. It is different from polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) resin in that it can be melt processed using traditional injection molding and screw extrusion techniques.
FEP resin has low melt viscosity, extrusion grade, medium viscosity, high melt viscosity and water-based dispersion. They can be processed by techniques commonly used in thermoplastics, such as extrusion, injection molding, rotational molding, dipping, slush molding, and powder and fluidized bed coating, and can be expanded into foams.
- The largest proportion of FEP is used in electrical applications such as connecting wires, interconnecting wires, thermocouple wires, computer wires, and molded parts of electrical and electronic components.
- Chemical applications include lined storage tanks, lined pipes and fittings, heat exchangers, braided hoses, gaskets, parts valves and laboratory utensils.
- Mechanical applications include anti-stick applications such as conveyor belts and roller covers.
- FEP film is used for solar collector windows because of its light weight, good weather resistance, high transparency and easy installation.
- FEP film is also used for heat sealing of PTFE coated fabrics (such as architectural fabrics).
- FEP has also been used in various scientific researches, such as the preparation of three-layer piezoelectric electrets from fluorinated ethylene-propylene (FEP) copolymer films.
Figure 1. Schematic diagram of design and preparation of three-layer piezoelectric electret 
- FEP is resistant to acids, bases, oxidizing agents and reducing agents, as well as almost all solvents, and generally has a low surface energy, which makes it particularly suitable as a material in microfluidic devices. The prepared microfluidic device can find applications in micro-scale separation technologies, including capillary electrophoresis, capillary liquid chromatography and capillary electrochromatography. In addition to separation technology, FEP channels will also become an excellent choice for materials in several rapidly developing fields such as drug screening, organic synthesis, and micro-scale variants of immunoassays.
Figure 2. Microscopic photograph of a 50-ím-diameter channel in FEP with a tungsten wire not completely pulled out.
- Peng Fang, Feipeng Wang, Werner Wirges, Reimund Gerhard, Heitor Cury Basso, Three-layer piezoelectrets from fluorinated ethylene-propylene (FEP) copolymer films, Appl Phys A (2011) 103: 455–461.
- Eskil Sahlin, Amy T. Beisler, Steven J. Woltman, and Stephen G. Weber, Fabrication of Microchannel Structures in Fluorinated Ethylene Propylene, Anal. Chem. (2002) 74: 4566-4569.
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