Choosing the right material for an application is a critical step in the product development process. Selecting the wrong material can have serious consequences beyond tarnishing brand reputation, including property damage, and injury.
Material selection has become increasingly complicated as the number of commercially available plastic materials continues to grow and applications continue to become more demanding. The list of available material options can be overwhelming. Despite the complexity of material behavior, product requirements, and design considerations, it is essential to get material selection right. The Madison Group has the knowledge and experience to identify the best material candidate given the specific product requirements and manufacturing processes. Engaging The Madison Group’s experts early in the development of a new product can help to avoid costly delays later in the product development cycle.
The Madison Group is constantly sourcing candidate materials for many diverse applications and can help select the right material for your needs.
Plastics are a recipe of polymers, additives, reinforcements, and fillers. Each substance added to the formulation serves a unique purpose. Additives may be added to enhance impact properties, or to protect a material from the harmful effects of UV rays. Other additives may be compounded in order to improve processability or thermal stability. Similarly, rubbers and thermosets, consist of a base polymeric substance with key added ingredients that will control the processability, curing behavior, and final performance properties of the product. With an infinite possibility for formulation constituents, it can be difficult to land on the perfect material or find a suitable replacement.
The Madison Group can help you navigate through this complex process, weeding out materials that will not work, while providing candidate materials that will last a lifetime.
Using our vast experience in processing, mechanical behavior, and failure of plastics, The Madison Group can recommend the best material alternatives for your plastic part or design.
The Madison Group possesses a broad and deep knowledge not only of plastic materials, but also how design, manufacturing processes, and service environments will affect their performance. This gives us the ability look beyond material properties and onto how processing and design will influence their behavior, such as for the case of warpage or anisotropy. In selecting the best material candidates, it is imperative to have a holistic perspective as so much of a plastic part’s performance in the application is connected to design and manufacturing.
Our services expand beyond material selection. We support our clients in defining and developing adequate testing methods for validating material alternatives, confirming they will meet the necessary performance requirements of the application.
We understand how frustrating it can be when the perfect material has already been qualified, but is now being terminated, and a suitable replacement is necessary. Our experience permits us to evaluate material options quickly and effectively to provide our clients with viable solutions.
When evaluating multiple material options, our goal is to balance performance requirements, properties, and cost to provide you with the best possible solution.
As polymeric material experts we are able to provide support for thermoplastics, thermosets, composites, rubbers and adhesives.
Processing, Manufacturability, and Service Life
Identifying one or various suitable materials for an application is only the first step to ensuring that a material will work for the intended design. Proper testing is always a critical step to confirm that datasheet values translate to real-life performance in the actual part geometry. A material that could seem an excellent candidate based on the service requirements, may be more prone to warpage for the particular design or simply be a resin that is more difficult to process. Susceptibility for processing induced weaknesses or molding defects should be avoided.
Our capabilities expand into material and product testing services. With our experience, we can help you define and develop proper test methods to validate a material for your given application, for a desired manufacturing process, and for your intended design.
Among the material support services we can provide our team can help you with:
- Material selection
- Supplier selection
- Mechanical property evaluation
- Metal-to-plastic material transitions
- Cost savings initiatives
- Specification developments
- Sustainability initiatives
- Technology reviews
- Additive manufacturing
- Reverse engineering
- Aging and compatibility studies
- Suitable replacements for discontinued or force majeure resins
- Validation testing
- Lifetime prediction studies
- Quality assurance protocols
By coupling our testing services and expertise when reviewing multiple material options, we can balance performance requirements, properties, and cost to provide you with the best possible solution.
For more information on our testing capabilities and offerings for manufacturing support, please visit:
At The Madison Group we are always ready to provide material support in any of the product development stages you may be. Whether you are developing a new product, improving an existing one, or finding a suitable replacement material, we have the experience needed to guide you through this process. Contact us today and request more information.