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This introductory article describes the various aspects of chemical structure and composition that are important to an understanding of polymer properties and their eventual effect on the end-use performance of engineering plastics, namely thermoplastics and thermosets. The most important properties of polymers and the most significant influences of structure on those properties are covered. The article also includes some general information on the classification and naming of polymers and plastics.

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Engineering Plastics: An Introduction, Characterization and Failure Analysis of Plastics, Edited By Steven Lampman, ASM International, 2003, p 3–27,

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