ABS: Acrylonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene Copolymer

Short Name
Acrylonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene Copolymer
CTP - Commodity Thermoplastics
General Properties
Chemical Formula
(C8H8)n1 (C4H6)n2 (C3H3N)n3
Structural Formula


Glass Transition Temperature
-85/95 to 105/(125) °C
Melting Temperature
- °C
Melting Enthalpy
- J/g
Decomposition Temperature
420 to 428 °C
Young's Modulus
2200 to 3000 MPa
Coefficient of Linear Thermal Expansion
80 to 100 *10¯6/K
Specific Heat Capacity
1.26 to 1.68 J/(g*K)
Thermal Conductivity
0.15 to 0.20 W/(m*K)
1.03 to 1.07 g/cm³
Amorphous thermoplastic
General properties
Good relation between impact resistance and toughness. Heat resistant, low water absorption.
Injection molding, extrusion, vacuum forming.
Household and consumer goods (e.g. phones, hard-top cases, crash helmets), automobile and electrical industry, toys.
Colored, blended with PMMA, fiber reinforcement, flame retardance.

Internet Links

Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Acrylonitrile_butadiene_styrene
NETZSCH: http://www.netzsch-thermal-analysis.com

NETZSCH Measurements

DSC Measurement

DSC 204 F1 Phoenix®
Sample Mass
12.28 mg
Isothermal Phase
7 min
Heating/Colling Rates
10 K/min
Al, pierced
N2 (50 ml/min)


The three glas transitions, which are not equally well visible for all ABS types, are typical for Acrylonitrile-Butadiene-Styrene Copolymer (ABS). Sometimes, only the glass transition at 100 to 105 ºC can be seen.

The first glass transition in the 2nd heating (green curve) with a temperature of approx. -84 ºC can be attributed to the polybutadiene component. The second glass transition at 106 ºC (2nd heating) can be attributed to the polystyrene component. I contrast to the 1st heating (blue), the glass transition in the 2nd heating shows a relaxation peak, indicating that the cooling process in the instrument (controlled cooling between the two heatings) was slower than the cooling during production of the granulate. The last and highest glass transition at 118 ºC (1st heating) is dependent on the acrylonitrile component and - as can be seen in the enlarged scaling - overlaps with the peak in this case.

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