How acrylic is made
Acrylic, or Polymethyl Methacrylate [PMMA, poly(methyl 2-methyl propenoate)], is the most important member of the family of acrylic resins, made by addition polymerization of the monomer, methyl methacrylate [CH2=C(CH3)COOCH3].
Starting from basic raw materials and feedstocks, like natural gas, acetone, sulfuric acid, and methanol, Roehm America LLC manufactures a basic building block of acrylic chemistry, methyl methacrylate (MMA). Cyro then converts a large portion of the MMA it manufactures into acrylic polymers. The polymers we manufacture contain MMA monomer as a primary ingredient. In some instances, small amounts of other monomers, co-monomers, are added to modify the performance properties of the acrylic.
Some monomer is converted directly into acrylic sheet using a cell casting process, while most of our other sheet products are manufactured using the acrylic polymer it manufactures in a separate step.
In summary, liquid methyl methacrylate (MMA) monomer is reacted with itself to produce poly methyl methacrylate (PMMA). Upon reaction, the PMMA hardens into a solid, which can be in various forms, such as resins or flat sheet. It is upon completion of this reaction that one ends up with acrylic.