Polyvinyl Alcohol

Project @ a Glance
  •  Polyvinyl alcohol (PVOH, PVA, or PVAL) is a water-soluble synthetic polymer. Polyvinyl alcohol has excellent film forming, emulsifying, and adhesive properties. It is also resistant to oil, grease and solvent. It is odorless and nontoxic. It has high tensile strength, flexibility, as well as high oxygen and aroma barrier. 
  •  Unlike most vinyl polymers, PVA is not prepared by polymerization of the corresponding monomer. The monomer, vinyl alcohol, almost exclusively exists as the tautomeric form, acetaldehyde. PVA instead is prepared by partial or complete hydrolysis of polyvinyl acetate to remove acetate groups. Sizing is a processing aid applied to rovings and yarns to provide lubricity and binding action to protect the fibers and assist in handling. 299 and 399 organic sizing composed of polyvinyl alcohol(PVA) and additives (plasticizers, lubricants, etc.) is designed for easy removal by heat cleaning.
  • The primary raw material used in the manufacture of polyvinyl alcohol is vinyl acetate monomer. It is manufactured by the polymerization of vinyl acetate followed by partial hydrolysis. The process of hydrolysis is based on the partial replacement of ester group in vinyl acetate with the hydroxyl group, and is completed in the presence of aqueous sodium hydroxide. Following gradual addition of the aqueous saponification agent. Polyvinyl alcohol is precipitated, washed and dried.
  •   There are two methods for preparing a 4% aqueous solution of polyvinyl alcohol, the conventional heating method and the microwave heating method. The microwave method is much easier and less time consuming. Once the 4% polyvinyl alcohol solution is made it will last 6 to 8 weeks. It is a good idea to store this solution in a refrigerator, as it will support bacteria growth. It is recommended that tap water be used when making the polyvinyl alcohol solution. Bacteria will grow much faster in a polyvinyl alcohol solution that contains distilled water. Polyvinyl alcohol and its solutions are considered non-toxic.
  • Semicrystalline films of poly(vinyl alcohol) (PVA) were prepared by annealing amorphous PVA films at temperatures above the glass transition temperature of 85°C, thus allowing the macromolecules to form crystallites, which stabilized the films and made them behave as if they were chemically cross-linked. Films were prepared by casting a 15% aqueous PVA solution onto glass slides and annealing them at temperatures ranging from 90 to 120°C at 15 to 90 min. 
  • PVA is widely used in freshwater sport fishing. Small bags made from PVA are filled with dry- or oil-based bait and attached to the hook, or the baited hook is placed inside the bag and cast into the water. When the bag lands on the lake or river bottom it breaks down, leaving the hook bait surrounded by ground bait, pellets etc. This method helps attract fish to the hook bait, though it does result in dissolved plastic in the water.
  • Biodegradable polymer market in the US has witnessed a series of consolidations over the past 10 years. In 2003 there were more than 7 players in the US Biodegradable polymer market. The U.S. biodegradable polymer market revenues were estimated at $27.0 million, corresponding to 22.9 million pounds of unit shipment. The U.S. biodegradable polymer market revenue is forecast to grow to $67.8 million in 2010 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 12.2 percent. 
  • German chemicals group BASF has launched two new pharmaceutical film-coating products, cementing its position in a market estimated to be worth about €200 million and growing at 5 to 6 per cent a year. Last year, BASF launched Kollicoat IR, the first of a new generation of excipients based on polyvinyl alcohol-polyethylene glycol copolymer. 
  • The use of polyvinyl alcohol (PVA) as a coating agent for food supplements poses no health risks, according to a recent EFSA investigation. The European supplements market was estimated to be worth 5.2 billion in 2005, with growth rate expected to peak at 4.4 percent over this year before dropping to a steady 4.1 percent for the subsequent five years. By 2011, the market is predicted to be worth around 6.6 billion. 
  • Chemicals company DuPont said Friday its packaging and industrial polymers unit is raising its worldwide price for its Elvanol polyvinyl alcohol by 8 cents per pound. The company said high energy, transportation and raw material costs resulted in the price increase, which are effective June 1, or as contracts permit. Elvanol polyvinyl alcohol is used in a variety of industries including textiles, paper, adhesives and films.
  • There are over 22 producers worldwide with ~ 1 million tons on the open market in 2002. Larger producers include Kuraray (Japan) and Celanese (USA) but mainland China has installed a number of very large production facilities in the past decade. In 1998, Western Europe has been the major importer of PVA, so it can be considered as a target market. India and Pakistan can also be considered as target markets. The domestic demand of PVA is estimated to be at least 5,000 Tons per annum for the next coming years.
  • PVOH demand in Asia (except China) was almost flat in 2006 as compared with 2005 when the market plummeted by 10% or so. Moves of PVOH demand appear to be very erratic, affected by inventories in the distribution channel. In 2007 so far, there is no sign of PVOH demand increasing significantly. Under these circumstances, PVOH prices in Asia are not strong at the moment and remain depressed around $2000/ton cfr for most representative commodity grades. Prices for big accounts are slightly below $2000/tonb cfr.
  • The combined exports of China and Taiwan amounted to about 38,700 tons in 2006, and if the exports are regulated by the anti-dumping problem, these exports must find out other markets. Due to the growth potential, Asian markets including the Chinese domestic market should be home for such material. But, if Chinese producers aggressively increase the production capacity, the problem may not be so  simple.



Reactions of Polyvinyl Alcohol with Clay

Thermal and Physical Properties

Company Profiles




Material Safety Data Sheet

Aspects of Polyvinyl Alcohol