What is Nylon, and What is it Used For?
Nylon is a synthetic thermoplastic linear polyamide (a large molecule whose components are bound by a particular type of bond) that was first produced in 1935 by American chemist Wallace Carothers who was then working at the DuPont research facility in Delaware. Wallace produced what is technically known as Nylon 66 (still one of the most common variants). Demand for Nylon in particular and synthetic materials in general grew during World War II when natural items like silk, rubber, and latex were in significantly shorter supply.
Nylon is used for a variety of applications to include clothing, reinforcement in rubber material like car tires, for use as a rope or thread, and for a number of injection molded parts for vehicles and mechanical equipment. It is exceptionally strong, relatively resistant to abrasions and moisture absorptivity, long lasting, resistant to chemicals, elastic and easy to wash. Nylon is often used as a substitute for low strength metals. It is the plastic of choice for components in the engine compartment of vehicles because of its strength, temperature resilience, and chemical compatibility.