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October 24, 2017
 
 
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      Glass   Plastic
Soda Lime Glass
High-density Polyethylene (HDPE)
     Polypropylene (PP)
  • Translucent
  • Rigid
  • Excellent stress-crack resistance
  • Repeatably autoclavable
  • Effectively resists weak and concentrated acids, aliphatic alcohols and bases
  • Also known as flint glass
  • Resists attack from virtually all chemicals
  • Impermeable to oxygen, other gases
  • No permeation of container contents through glass wall
  • Translucent
  • Flexible, but more rigid than low-density polyethylene
  • Highly resistant to acids (except oxidizing acids) aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbons 
  • Suitable for soil and sludge sampling
Amber Glass
Low-density Polyethylene (LDPE)
    PET (Polyethylene terephthalate
  • Recommended for UV light-sensitive samples
  • All the advantages of flint glass
  • Translucent
  • Excellent resistance to weak or dilute acids, strong or concentrated acids, aliphatic alcohols and bases
  • High impact resistance
  • Glass-like clarity
  • Flexible
  • Less permeable to oxygen than polyethylene
  • Excellent resistance to dilute or weak acids, aliphatic acids, and aliphatic hydrocarbons
Borosilicate Glass - 33 Expansion
  • Low coefficient of expansion gives high resistance to thermal shock
  • Very high resistance against chemical attack. Meets requirements for USP Type I, Class A glass. Low alkali content and is made without elements of the calcium, magnesium, zinc groups or the heavy metals. The combined total of arsenic and antimony oxides is less than 0.005%
Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE)
       Polystyrene (PS)
  • Opaque
  • Maximum temperature use: 250°C
  • Excellent resistance to weak acids, most strong acids, bases
  • Very resistant to organic solvents
  • Can be autoclaved repeatedly
  • PTFE is widely known as TEFLON®
  • TEFLON® is a registered trademark of E.I. DuPont de Nemours and Company
  • Glass-like clarity
  • Rigid
  • Good resistance to aqueous solutions but limited resistance to organic solvents
  • Brittle at ambient temperature, and may crack or break if dropped from bench-top height
Borosilicate Glass - 51 Expansion 
  • Very high resistance against chemical attack
  • Meets requirements for USP Type I, Class B glass 
Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) 
  • Transparent
  • Extremely good resistance to oils (except essential oils)
  • Very low permeability to most gases
Chemical Resistance Reagent (20°C) HPDE LDPE PET PP PS PTFE PVC
Inorganic acids E E N E E E E
Organic acids E E E E E E N
Oxidizing agents conc. G G N G G E N
Alchohols G E E E E E E
Aldehydes G G N G N E N
Amines G G N G G E N
Bases E E N E E E E
Ketones G G N G N E N
Ethers G G * G N E N
Esters E E N E N E N
Glycols E E * E G E F
Aliphatic Hydrocarbons G G E G E E N
Aromatic Hydrocarbos G G N G N E N
Halogenated Hydrocarbons G G N G N E N
Mineral Oils E F * F E E E
Vegatable Oils G G * F * E G
Lubricating Oils E G * E * E *

E - Excellent resistance; no damage after 30 days of exposure; plastic may even tolorate for years
G - Good resistance; little or no damage after 30 days of constant exposure
F - Fair resistance; some damage after 7 days of exposure
N - Not recommended; immediate damage may occur
* - Information not available

Sterilization HPDE LDPE PET PP PS PTFE PVC
Autoclaving (121°C, 15psig for 20 min.) No No No Yes No Yes No
Dry Heat (160°C, 120 min.) No No No No No Yes No
Gas (Ethylene oxide) Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Radiation (Gamma irradiation, 25 kGy) Yes Yes Yes No Yes Yes No
Disinfectants
(Benzalkonium chloride, formalin, ethanol, etc)
Yes Yes Yes Yes Some Some Yes

Temperature Range HPDE LDPE PET PP PS PTFE PVC
Max Use Temperature (°C) 120 80 70 135 90 250 70
Brittleness Temperature (°C) -100 -100 <-40 0 20 -100 -30
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