Manufacture

Total Life Cycle Environmental Efficiency

EPS is made from styrene, a by-product of crude oil extraction. It is also found in the natural starch contained in many fruit and food products. For every 1000 litres of oil extracted, less than 1kilogram of EPS results. No oil is extracted solely for EPS production. The following diagram demonstrates the source of materials used to produce EPS.

Expanded polystyrene is made from expandable polystyrene, which is a rigid cellular plastic containing an expansion agent. EPS is obtained from oil as can be seen from the diagram.

The manufacture process of EPS products from the raw material (expandable polystyrene) uses natural gas to produce steam. The manufacture process also uses some electricity to run the moulding machines and ancillary equipment. Cooling water used to cool the moulds after the EPS has formed the desired product is collected and reused in the cooling process. Steam that condenses during the moulding process is also collected and reused to conserve water.

The expanding force in the foam is produced from the pentane, which is contained within the expandable polystyrene. The pentane is released during the moulding process.

Pentane has a Global Warming Potential (GWP) of zero. The European Union does not register pentane as a substance hazardous to human health or the environment.

RMAX EPS products do not contain ozone-depleting substances.