Acrylic is among the most important and high-strength transparent polymers. Sheets manufactured by this polymer have five times the strength of glass at the same thickness besides being flexible, unlike glass. Due to lightweight, color stability, and resistance against atmospheric factors such as solar radiation and chemicals such as acids, greases, and household detergents, it is a great glass alternative in the construction industry. Acrylic sheets are known with the trademark Plexiglas®.
These sheets can be used as sound and thermal insulators, because heat transfer between these sheets and surroundings is almost 10% less than glass.
Due to unique mechanical properties, these sheets are resistant against temperature fluctuations, as well as rain and hail. They also absorb less moisture than regular glass and are more resilient to thermal shocks than glass. In the case of fracture, they do not produce sharp surfaces and consequently do not cause injury. These sheets are intrinsically resistant against UV irradiation. The transparency of acrylic sheets and building glass is 92% and 90%, respectively.
On the other hand, acrylic sheets are more scratch-resistant than other transparent polymeric sheets and are comparable with glass in this regard.
The polished surface and light transmission from acrylic sheets create beautiful and diverse environments. Some applications of acrylic sheets include:
Skylights and windows of buildings, false ceilings, billboards, partitioning, patio, bathroom, kitchen cabinets, aquarium, phone kiosks, and other applications.