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Dispersible polymer powders - binding ability and water resistance

Dispersible polymer powder

Dispersible polymer powders are homo- or copolymer dispersions that have been spray-dried to make them free-flowing and storable. This means that such powders are exceptionally suitable for adding to cement and gypsum mortar to significantly improve their properties.

Not only that, this type of chemical can enhance the properties of other construction materials such as tile adhesives, fillers and wallpaper adhesives.

Regardless of whether they are added before or after hydration, dispersible polymer powders are one of the most valuable helpers in the construction industry and the building materials sector.

Working with our network of manufacturers and suppliers, TER Chemicals is able to supply you with high-quality dispersible polymer powders to suit your application.

Dispersible polymer powders are made by first suspending polymer particles (homo- or copolymers) in water and then spray-drying them. This creates round, powder-like agglomerates with a diameter of about 80 to 100 μm.

After this process, mineral anticaking agents are added to produce a dry, free-flowing and storable polymer powder, which is subsequently stored in bags or silos. During the production of cement or gypsum mortar, the dispersible polymer powder is added to the mixing water and stirred until it disperses on its own. The agglomerates then break up and return to their smaller original molecules.

Dispersible polymer powders are made by spray-drying polymer dispersions. Adding water to these powders will break up their granules and release the particles found in the original dispersions. This process does not alter the properties of the polymers.

Properties at a glance:

  • excellent cohesion
  • excellent adhesive strength (even when used on difficult substrates and after prolonged water exposure)
  • high flexibility
  • good film-forming properties (without addition of film-formers)
  • high water resistance
  • increased open time (the amount of time after application where an adhesive can still form a usable bond)
  • high hydrophobicity
  • ability to bridge cracks
  • high processability due to their sticky texture 
  • high binding ability

Redispersible polymer powders are used especially in construction work, where their main purpose is to help create long-lasting and durable adhesives and coatings for tiles, seals, conduits and pipelines.


Redispersible polymer powder is used for the production of polymer-modified dry mortars.

It is well-known that polymer-modified mortar, cement and concrete have significantly better properties that their unmodified counterparts. Manufacturers add the polymers either as a dispersion (two-component systems) or as a powder (one-component systems).

During the production of gypsum mortar, concrete or mineral cementitious materials such as cement, polymer powders which are dispersible are added to the mixing water and subsequently undergo redispersion.

Redispersible polymer powders can increase a material's bending tensile strength, abrasion resistance and compressive strength because the polymer modification decreases the water content in cement. The reduced water absorption caused by the polymer dispersion also makes mortar and cement more resistant to freeze-thaw cycles.

On top of that, when added to a material, redispersible polymer powders are able to maximize adhesive tensile strength, enhance elasticity and reduce porosity.

As a trusted supplier of specialty chemicals, we are able to help you find the right additive and raw materials to optimize your construction materials.

In addition to cement and gypsum mortar, dispersible polymer powders can be used to improve the properties of sealants, caulk, fillers, wallpaper adhesives, tile adhesives and exterior wall coatings.

Redispersible polymer powders are able to significantly enhance a material's processability. Adding the powders before hydration will not only decrease the amount of water required for processing, but also simplify handling and extend the amount of time you can work with the material.

After curing, the material in question will have a better bond to the substrate as well as greater flexibility. The cohesion between various construction components will also be stronger - even without the addition of plasticizers.

Redispersible polymer powders can give tile adhesives excellent adhesion, even allowing them to create a strong bond to difficult substrates such as natural stone, wood and plastic.

TER Chemicals is an established distributor of specialty chemicals with an extensive network of reliable manufacturers. Feel free to talk to us about the needs of your industry.

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