Brentwood Plastics Providing PPE Materials During Coronavirus Crisis
Brentwood’s is supplying PE film generally used for packaging and other applications for making impermeabile isolation gowns for healthcare worker in the fight against COVID-19.
Custom processor Brentwood Plastics Inc. (BPI), St. Louis, has been providing PE film to manufacturers across the U.S. for making impermeable isolation gowns for healthcare workers during the coronavirus pandemic. More than 1.6 million gowns were made in April alone from BPI film, and orders have been at a similar pace throughout May. On March 23, BPI and its employees were recognized by the U.S. Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency as “workers essential to critical infrastructure during the COVID-19 response.”
Brentwood makes relatively thin (mostly between 1 and 12 mils) blown PE films that traditionally are either converted or used for packaging by its customers. The material used is a blend of LDPE and LLDPE “subtly tweaked and unchanged for 15 years,” according to Joel Longstreth, BPI’s marketing manager.
Not new to the healthcare business, BPI has been providing flexible PE film for a variety of medical supplies, including ostomy bags, ophthalmic drapes, and laparoscopy drapes.
Adds Longstreth, “In an industry filled with commodity providers, we’re known as problem solvers. When a life or death challenge like this comes along, it's gratifying to put our lifetime of experience to work to deliver a solution.”
This so-called 'commodity' material is actually quite complex, making selecting of the right type a challenge.
In polyethylene, density provides another mechanism to control properties. But it must be specified properly.
Though often criticized, MFR is a very good gauge of the relative average molecular weight of the polymer. Since molecular weight (MW) is the driving force behind performance in polymers, it turns out to be a very useful number.