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 Form 4 Chemistry: Organic Chemistry II Online Lessons

Advantages of synthetic polymers and fibres over natural polymers

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Answer Text:
(b). Synthetic polymers
- They are man-made e.g. polythene, Perspex
- They are of two main types; thermoplastic and thermosetting polymers.
-Thermoplastic;
- Softens on heating and becomes rigid on cooling. Examples: nylon, polythene, polystyrene, etc.
-Thermosetting:
- Are those that become hard on heating and cannot be softened by heating.
Advantages of synthetic polymers and fibres over natural polymers
1. They can be made into different shapes easily.
2. They are cheaper.
3. Are often unaffected by ac ids, alkalis, water and air.
4. Are usually less denser and yet stronger
Disadvantages
1. Plastics are nonbiodegradable hence causes a lot if problems in disposal
2. Plastics burn more readily than natural material
3. Some synthetic polymers give off poisonous gases when they burn. E. g. polyurethane gives off cyanide and carbonmonoxide


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