Significant COVID-19 Impact | Synthetic Rubber | Chemical and Materials Industry

Posted by swarajya on April 21st, 2021

COVID-19 Impact on Synthetic Rubber in Chemical and Materials Industry


Rubber products are commonly used in day-to-day life activity. Synthetic rubber is the type of an artificial elastomer. The first synthetic rubber was created by Neoprene which is known as Polychloroprene in 1930 by a DuPont chemist. Synthetic rubber has the property of resistant to gas and oil due to which synthetic rubber is widely used in industrial machinery and automotive industries. In the 1930s, scientists from Germany created another form of synthetic rubber using co-polymers. During World War II, Japanese access to natural rubber was cut off in the South Pacific which increases the need for an alternative product and so natural rubber became necessary in the country due to the lack of access to natural rubber raw material or products, synthetic rubber was being used in various manufacturing and industrial sector. With the increasing popularity of synthetic rubber products, its application increases and has become the norm for most of the industries.

Synthetic rubber is made from the polymers synthesized which are the by-products of petroleum. Synthetic rubber has several properties as the products are solid, flexible and durable for longer duration. Synthetic rubber can easily be shaped into any form when heated and become strong when cools down. As synthetic rubber products are made from several elastomers mixtures which help to increase the strength of the synthetic rubber and make products resistant to heat, light and from different chemicals. Synthetic rubber when added to the other products during manufacturing makes the product heat as an electrical insulator.

Synthetic rubber is different from the natural rubber as natural rubber is a polymer that is derived from tree sap. The sap is exposed to natural air and temperatures which make natural rubber harden in nature. The nature rubber is heated with the sulfur and no other chemicals are added to the natural rubber products. Synthetic rubber is manufactured under factories under different processes which include the use of different catalysts to create the polymer. Different chemicals and compounds are used to make up different forms of synthetic rubber which are used for several applications in industries.

Synthetic rubber is manufactured from the raw material which is derived from petroleum, coal, oil, natural gas, and acetylene and many of them are the co-polymers. Naphtha is produced during the refining process of the synthetic rubber. The naphtha product is extracted which can be mixed with natural gas to create more monomers such as styrene and isoprene which are essential for synthetic rubber manufacturing. Synthetic rubber products are of different types and have the different chemical properties and used in several applications. Styrene-butadiene rubber and butadiene rubber (both of which are buna rubbers) are commonly used in tire production which are used in the automotive industry. Synthetic rubber are used in several applications which are tires, clutches, engine bearings, conveyor belts, industrial goods, seals for drinking water and another type of acrylonitrile butadiene rubber (NBR) is used in industry for the heavy duty applications as the product is resistant to fuel and oil, has good temperature properties and is resistant to abrasion.

The different types of the synthetic rubber are:

  • Acrylic Rubber (ACM)
  • Butadiene Rubber (BR)
  • Butyl Rubber (IIR)
  • Chlorosulfonated Polyethylene (CSM)/ Hypalon
  • Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer (EPDM)
  • Fluoroelastomers (FKM)/ Viton
  • Isoprene Rubber (IR)
  • Nitrile Rubber (NBR)
  • Perfluoroelastomer (FFKM)
  • Polychloroprene (CR)/ Neoprene
  • Polysulfide Rubber (PSR)
  • Silicone Rubber (SiR)
  • Styrene Butadiene Rubber (SBR)


The COVID-19 have created the pandemic situation in all over the word due to which the economy of all the regions have been affected on the larger extent and will recover in very steady pace. No sector such as manufacturing and automotive is immune from the effect of the COVID-19, all the manufacturers in the regions have faced the ups and down in the business due to the COVID-19 situation and unable to forecast the demand of the products. The government and the higher authorities have taken strict actions for lowering the spread of the COVID-19 which has resulted in the lockdown in the countries and halt in the production of the finished goods. The pandemic have hit the economy very hard worldwide as the lockdown was imposed in all the regions which have made the situation challenging for all sectors for growth and also the developing activities would be done in the different stages. Read in detail…

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Joined: April 7th, 2021
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