Topas COC can replace PAN resin in packaging, other applications

Topas Advanced Polymers’scyclic olefin copolymer (COC) has been identified as a successful alternative to Barex polyacrylonitrile (PAN) in the wake of the announced closure of Swiss chemicals firm Ineos’s lone Barex plant in Lima, Ohio.

Working closely with top packaging suppliers, Topas, which has operation locations in Germany, the US and Japan, has specified COC, a glass-clear and incredibly pure plastic in a wide range of pharmaceutical packages such as medicinal pouches and patches and other applications that require strong chemical resistance.

Timothy Kneale, President of Topas says that his company’s COC can meet the needs of many healthcare suppliers who seek a replacement for Barex materials. He adds that PAN and COC come from the opposite ends of the polymer spectrum but they offer similar properties when it comes to barrier/permeation performance and strong chemical resistance.

The pharmaceutical packaging industry is already familiar with COC through its use in semi-rigid and container applications, according to Kneale. While not a 1-for-1 replacement for PAN, COC delivers effective chemical resistance and low adsorption rates, exhibiting low reactivity with medical-grade chemical contents such as nicotine for patches.

For example, COC’s resistance to methyl salicylate is similar to PAN and better than PETG. COC’s adsorption of nicotine is less than that of PETG and ethylene vinyl alcohol (EVOH). Topas’s converter customers have developed innovative nicotine patch packaging solutions utilizing COC for the transdermal industry.

COC is known for its high purity and excellent heat sealing behavior, and comes with broad global regulatory compliance for food contact and medical uses. Unlike PAN, Topas COC can be melt processed by all common thermoplastic processing methods including mono and multi-layer film, sheet, and extrusion coating, along with injection and extrusion blow moulding.

Topas COC is a key component in a broad range of global Barex replacement products from leading healthcare packaging companies.


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