This paper deals with the property changes which occur when selected polymers or plastics are exposed to ionizing radiation and with some of the parameters which must be considered in order to optimize these changes. Numerous reactions occur during the irradiation of polymers such as hydrogen evolution, crosslinking, chain scission, production of unsaturation and activation of crosslinking to chain scission which determines the kink and extent of changes that result. Industrial radiation processing of polyethylene, polyvinylidene fluoride and polyvinylchloride has been developed through an effective exploitation of one or more of the property changes. These developments are discussed. (Author, modified-PL) ANNOTATION: Property changes from irradiating plastics.
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