21/06/2018

Verification of the Suitability of Alternative Plastics Moulded Materials

The design type is specified in the design type approvals of drums, jerricans, IBCs and composite packaging with inner plastics receptacles by the BAM as the competent authority in terms of the use of the plastics moulded material. A change of the producer of plastics moulded materials or of the moulded material is regarded as a new material and a new design type independent from the specific material parameters of the plastics moulded material. The testing type testing had to be repeated generally. The issue of another design type approval was necessary.

It is possible to forbear from this extensive procedure with publishing of the rules for the verification of the suitability of alternative plastics moulded materials for the manufacture of packaging and IBCs for dangerous goods (Dangerous Goods Rule 003 of the BAM) if the required limits of specific material parameters are kept.

In the Dangerous Goods Rule 003 of the BAM – Packaging – Transport packaging for dangerous goods – Comparative material testing of polyethylene grades – are specified for the applicant (Producer of plastics moulded materials, manufacturer of plastics packaging or IBC etc.) the preconditions for the use of alternative polyethylene grades for the manufacture of packaging and IBCs for transport of dangerous goods.

Plastics moulded materials for packaging and IBC are approved based on this dangerous Goods Rule without repetition of the whole design type testing.

Scope of the suitability proof for alternative plastics resins according to Dangerous Goods Rule 003

These rules apply to resins from high-molecular polyethylene with the following specifications:

  • Relative density D at 23°C after thermal conditioning for one hour at 100°C, in accordance with ISO 1183 with specimen made from the pressed plate acc. to ISO 1872, Part 2:
    D ≥ 0,940 g/cm³;
  • melt flow rate MFR at 190°C/ 21,6 kg load established with the resin in accordance with ISO 1133:
    MFR ≤ 12 g/10 min

and to resins from medium-molecular polyethylene with the following specifications

  • Relative density D at 23°C after thermal conditioning for one hour at 100°C, in accordance with ISO 1183 with specimen made from the pressed plate acc. to ISO 1872, Part 2:
    D ≥ 0,940 g/cm³;
  • melt flow rate MFR at 190°C/ 2,16 kg load established with the resin in accordance with ISO 1133:
    MFR ≤ 0,5 g/10 min and ≥ 0,1 g/10 min.,
    and at 190°C/ 5 kg load established with the resin in accordance with ISO 1133:
    MFR ≤ 3 g/10 min and ≥ 0,5 g/10 min.

Test procedures and requirements

The following tests for the comparison of the PE-HD grades are performed according the Dangerous Goods Rule 003 (BAM-GGR 003). The named tests are not only for grades of PE-HD but also for additional polymeric materials applicable.

In the comparison of the material parameters specifies A the particular material parameter of the approved PE-HD grade of the original design type and B the material parameter of the alternative PE-HD grade.

a) Production of Squeeze Plates in Compliance with DIN EN ISO 1872, Part 2

The production of squeeze plates with various thicknesses is performed in compliance with the press conditions specified in the above named standard.

Test pieces are taken from the pressed plates and used to determine the material characteristics.

b) Determining Relative Density in Compliance with ISO 1183

Relative density D at 23°C is determined using the buoyancy method. The test material used consists of tempered sections from the mid area of the squeeze plate, plate thickness s = (4 ±0,2) mm.

Specification BAM – GGR 003:

D ≥ 0,940 g/cm³
DB ≥ DA – 0,002 g/cm³ at 23°C

c) Determining Melt – Mass Flow Rate in Compliance with DIN EN ISO 1133

The melt-flow index MFR is determined at 190°C using a predefined load. The test material consists of the granular material in its supplied condition and stamped sections having an edge length of l ≤ 4 mm from the squeeze plate, plate thickness s = variable.

Specification BAM – GGR 003:

MFR(190/21,6) ≤ 12 g/10 min;
70 % MFRA ≤ MFRB ≤ 130% MFRA

d) Determining Impact Strength acN in Compliance with ISO 179.1

Impact strength acN is determined using the Charpy impact strength method in compliance with ISO 179/1eA at -30°C. The type 1 test specimens with a single notch A are taken from the middle area of the squeeze plate using a metal cutting method; plate thickness s = (4 ± 0,2) mm.

Specification BAM-GGR 003:

acNB ≥ acNA - 10 %

e) Determining Stress Crack Sensitivity FNCT in Compliance with ISO 16770

Stress crack sensitivity FNCT is determined in a creep rupture test using a specimen C in a 2 % by weight #solution of Akropal N100 in water at 50 °C and with a tensile stress of approx. σ = (9 ± 2) MPa. The calculation for the actual load is performed following a microscopic assessment of the fracture surfaces of the test specimen. The type C test specimens are cut from the middle area of the squeeze plate with thickness s = (6 ± 0.2) mm, and notched all around 1 mm using a razor blade.

Specification BAM-GGR 003:

FNCTB ≥ FNCTA - 20 %

f) Determining Sensitivity towards Oxidative Degradation Ox in Compliance with DIN EN ISO 16101

To determine sensitivity towards oxidative degeneration Ox, specimens are subjected to method C1 - Measurement of melt-mass flow rate MFR (melt-flow index) before and after storage of the specimens using a 55% nitric acid at 40 °C. The test conditions for determining the MFR in compliance with DIN EN ISO 1133 - temperature and load - are set in agreement with the granulate that is tested beforehand. The test specimens used consist of two squeeze plates each, plate thickness s = (2 ± 0.2) mm.

Specification BAM-GGR 003:

OxB≤ OxA + 20 %

Conditions and essential documents for the comparative material testing according BAM-GGR 003

Application for the determination material parameters according BAM GGR 003 (liable to pay costs).

  • The grade which is already approved in design type approval for a special design type for the transport of solid and liquid materials and the alternative moulded material have to be provided.
  • The mass of the grade to be provided for the tests according BAM GGR 003 is arranged with BAM (approx. 5-7 kg).
  • Each grade to be tested shall be selected from a batch having properties in the middle of the specified range in the supply specification for the grade. The samples shall be identified by batch number.
  • The material parameters of the moulded material to be tested shall be determined in the same testing laboratory.
  • The applicant receives a test report. One copy remains in the BAM.
  • The material parameters determined are of use both for the verification for the suitability of alternative plastics moulded materials and according BAM GGR 003 and for the comparison of the proficiency level of the materials among each other.