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Evaluating quality of plastic and UV resistance
Radiation Map pdf Radiation map - Evaluate Plastic UV Resistance by Region

Most polymers used in plastic materials are susceptible to substantial degradation caused by sunlight, in particular the ultraviolet segment of the light spectrum.
Solar radiation is commonly divided into various regions or bands on the basis of light wavelength. UV Ultraviolet radiation is that part of the electromagnetic spectrum with wavelength between 100 and 400 nm.
Plastic materials used outdoor are fully exposed to the UV radiation generated by the sun, present even on cloudy days. When ultraviolet attack occurs the material may have a color shift, become brittle and chalky on its surface, crack. This can happen in a very short time and have negative, unpredictable and even dangerous effects on your application.

Avoid the risk that your plastic material is subject to quick UV degradation
Always ask for quality plastic materials made with polymers properly treated to strongly reduce UV degradation. Plastic UV resistance is not visible and therefore has to be guaranteed by your manufacturer. We supply high quality UV treated plastics for all our products studied for outdoor use.

Calculate the UV exposure in your particular region
Plastic UV resistance, if generically expressed in years, is meaningless.
In the world of professional applications plastic life depends on the total amount of UV radiation your material is exposed to. This is changing from one geographical region to another as solar radiation is unevenly distributed throughout the world because of such variables as solar altitude, which is associated with latitude and season, and atmospheric conditions, which are determined by cloud coverage and degree of pollution. Furthermore the total solar radiation received at ground level consists also of different components such as direct and indirect radiation (scattered, diffused, or reflected).
World maps illustrating the isolines of the mean global solar radiation (both direct and diffuse radiations) have been developed using data provided by satellites. Download our Radiation Map and determine the average radiation level in your region, commonly expressed in kilo Langley per year (kLy/yr).
For example in most Northern Europe the average radiation level is 80-100 Kly/year as it can be seen on our Map.

Ask for your product UV resistance factor
We provide, for all products where this measure is applicable, a UV resistance factor, expressed as total radiation for the minimum product lifetime. For example if your product is rated 500 kLy/yr and you will use it outdoor in Northern Europe, assuming radiation is at a level of maximum 100 kLy/yr, your product will have a UV life of minimum 500 / 100 = 5 years.

How does UV resistance relates to other measures of radiation power?
The Langley as unit of measure for radiation power takes its name from NASA Langley Research Center which studies the impact of sun radiation on Earth.

1 kLy = 1 kcal/cm2 = 41.84 MJ/m2

1 kLy/yr = 1.33 W/m2








UV plastic degradation caused by sun

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