PTFE, short for polytetrafluoroethylene, is a polymer belonging to the class of perfluorocarbons (PFCs). How is PTFE obtained? The process by which polytetrafluoroethylene is obtained is called homopolymerisation of tetrafluoroethene: with this chemical phenomenon, the material emulsifies at low temperatures and low pressures and uses inorganic salts to catalyse itself. At this point, the emulsion creates very fine polymer particles that do not stick together.

How is PTFE processed? Usually, this polymer is known by other names such as Teflon or Algoflon . Companies specialising in the distribution of polytetrafluoroethylene components distinguish this material into virgin PTFE and filled PTFE: in the first case, it is not added to other materials; in the second case, other substances are added to the PTFE to stabilise and fluidise the compound, making it easier to apply.
Still other times, silica, stainless steel or even carbon are added to the polymer, all substances that can make perfect materials for the mechanical and pharmaceutical industries.
The addition of so-called fillers enables the polymer to:

  • increase the material’s resistance to corrosion;
  • increase conductivity from a technical and electrical point of view;
  • reduce deformations;
  • reduce the coefficient of thermal expansion.

What does PTFE look like? Polytetrafluoroethylene is a material that is smooth to the touch and can withstand very high temperatures, provided these do not exceed 260 °C.
Precisely because of its resistance, it is common to see materials made from PTFE in the industrial sector for all processes where extreme inertness and non-stick properties are required. One example is non-stick pans, kitchen tools whose interior is coated with a PTFE film.


PTFE, due to its extremely versatile nature, has been considered a valuable ally in industry since the 1970s.
In fact, the virgin polymer material can boast numerous strengths:

  • is insoluble in water and organic solvents;
  • is not modified by other substances: PTFE is not corroded by chemical compounds, except in very rare cases, such as certain fluorinated substances;
  • does not alter other substances: this polymer prevents the deterioration of other substances, such as fluids, and this makes it suitable for the electronics industry;
  • fire resistant: PTFE is a material that prevents the spread of flames;
  • is non-stick: a PTFE-coated product is not stickable;
  • glides on surfaces: the coefficient of friction is lower than for other substances used in industry.

These factors remain stable in a temperature range between – 80 °C and 260 °C, a range that allows industries to work efficiently in a variety of situations.

A negative element of pure PTFE is that, although it remains intact at high temperatures, it decomposes. For this reason, industries have started synthesising the product with waxes or adding modifying monomers during the polymerisation process.
In the latter case, modified PTFE is obtained, a polymer that is suitable for isostatic moulding of semi-finished products and valve components.
Alternatively, it is possible to create pipes to transport highly corrosive substances with so-called PTFE ULTRA or, again, to use PTFE as an electrical conduction material to dissipate electrostatic charges.

It is precisely these characteristics just described that have made polytetrafluoroethylene functional in both the domestic and industrial spheres. In fact, in addition to the classic non-stick pan that prevents any food from sticking during the preparation of dishes, the chemical industry also makes extensive use of PTFE. In particular, in this sector it is common to make gaskets and small parts that can withstand constant contact with corrosive agents such as sulphuric acid.
In the chemical field, in addition, PTFE is used to hold two pieces of ground glass together, preventing them from coming apart over time.

In addition, PTFE is used to reduce the friction of gearboxes and the first detachment of motors , and in orthodontics for the creation of endosseous medical devices.

In construction, polytetrafluoroethylene is used to provide support for bridges; the function performed is by creep: with this technique, a PTFE sheet is interposed between two steel plates; in this case, advantage is taken of PTFE’s property whereby the material has a low coefficient of friction in contact with steel.

In the automotive industry, PTFE is used as an additive to the lubricant used for the smooth running of chains and mechanical elements of vehicles.

In mechanical engineering, it is used as an additional ingredient to the lubricant for drive chains in motorbikes and for mechanical components.


When you choose to make valve components, semi-finished products from specific materials such as polytetrafluoroethylene or PEEK, you need to rely on highly qualified personnel.
Precisely for this reason, you should consider who to turn to for quality PTFE products for your company.

TAFER presents itself as a company with more than 30 years of experience in the sector and, recently, the company has brilliantly distinguished itself for its dynamism and flexibility in the context in which it operates.
In addition to operating on the Italian territory, TAFER has established itself on the international territory, becoming a leader in Europe for the high technology used in the production process.

Using a wide range of state-of-the-art equipment, the company specialises in the production of virgin and filled PTFE and polymeric semi-finished products, such as natural and filled PEEK, PCTFE and DEVLON® V-API, and in metal blanking.

In addition, the company manufactures customised parts and components from PEEK machining and produces injection-moulded technopolymers in short lead times, meeting customer requirements. For any information contact us or write to us on our website.

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