NBR application: Gloves

Nitrile gloves

Due to its unique properties NBL is the preferred material to produce medical and food grade gloves that are thin, acts as a strong barrier against chemicals, bacteria and viruses and do not tear easily.

For many years Malaysia has been the primary location for rubber and gloves production. During 2020 and 2021 substantial capacity expansions have been announced in Malaysia and wider Asia to respond to a dramatic increase in global use of nitrile gloves. Even in the USA, as one of the effects of the global Covid-19 pandemic, there has been an announcement of a new NBL plant made.

Unique properties

NBR was invented in the thirties of the previous century by co-polymerizing butadiene with acrylonitrile. HNBR involves hydrogenating NBR to produce an ethylene-butadiene-acrylonitrle elastomer. This elastomer has great sealing properties, superior oil and fuel resistance and is very stable in higher temperature environments. HNBR is more costly and is considered a growing segment on the back of (electric) automotive.

NBR application: Car engine


Applications of NBR are wide and include seals, gasgets, adhesives, flooring, o-rings, conveyor belts, tubes, hoses, footware, gloves, cable jacketing, paper coatings, carpet backing, and ABS and PVC modification.

NBR is blended with other components to create the right properties for the application. Cable hoses for example typically use a mix of PVC and NBR.