Specialty polymers for medical device manufacturing
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Shepherd Bismuth Subcarbonate

Shepherd Bismuth Subcarbonate

Foster is the exclusive distributor for bismuth subcarbonate manufactured by Shepherd Chemical. Minimally invasive devices that are guided by x-ray or fluoroscopy, such as vascular catheters, often use bismuth subcarbonate as an additive to enhance device visibility.

Shepherd’s bismuth subcarbonate is manufactured using a proprietary milling process to achieve particle sizes below 0.3 micrometers (1.2 x 10-5 inches). These fine particles allow for optimal dispersion of the radiopaque filler throughout the polymer during melt blending. This results in the excellent surface finish and consistent radiopacity throughout the device component. Common resins include thermoplastic urethanes (TPUs), polyamides (nylon 11 and 12), and polyether block amide copolymers (PEBA).

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