Committee Chair

Thomas, Tricia A.

Committee Member

Jones, Frank; Henry, Jim

Department

Dept. of Engineering

College

College of Engineering and Computer Science

Publisher

University of Tennessee at Chattanooga

Place of Publication

Chattanooga (Tenn.)

Abstract

Malodors are commonly detected in molded polymers used for general purposes such as household items, domestic appliances, plastic furniture, wheel and bumper covers in the automotive industry, and laboratory equipment. Research indicates that such strong odors are associated with the emission of harmful substances and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Above a certain level of tolerance these volatile compounds have long-term effects detrimental to health after frequent exposure. This thesis seeks to investigate some of the compounds present in a molded polymer used by Company C in their finished product using gas chromatography and suggest ways to minimize or eliminate the smell without compromising other physical and chemical properties of the final polymer. Every stage of the production process from start to finish was analyzed, including formulation, compounding and molding. Blind odor tests were performed using the same group of panelists to determine which ingredients or molded polymers had the best or worst odor. Next, gas chromatography analysis was used to investigate what compounds were contributing to the smell detected by the panelists. Finally, several iterations of new formulations were made based on the overall analysis of the individual ingredients. The formulation that emerged best, with regards to the complete test specification, especially smell, is recommended for use in molding the new polymer.

Degree

M. S.; A thesis submitted to the faculty of the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the degree of Master of Science.

Date

5-2012

Subject

Gas chromatography; Volatile organic compounds

Keyword

Malodors; Molded polymers

Discipline

Engineering

Document Type

Masters theses

Extent

x, 93 leaves

Language

English

Rights

Under copyright.

License

http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-nd/3.0/

Included in

Engineering Commons

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