Shape memory polymer

Shape memory polymer

Plastic that can remember it’s prior shape after remoulding at low temperature, will return to this shape if heated again. Suitable for moulding with thermoforming methods like injection moulding the plastic can have come in different shapes. After forming unlike shape memory alloy it can not be be reprogrammed short of completely melting and reforming the plastic. However after heating past 70° the plastic can be deformed and cooled to now have a new shape. Bringing this new deformed shape up again to 70° will cause the plastic to return to it’s original shape.



  • Can remember past shapes.
  • Can be shaped at 70C to new shapes.
  • Will return to remembered shape if heated again.
  • Is rigid with a little flexibility
  • Exerts a small amount of force to return to original shape.


  • Cannot be programmed with a new permanent shape.
  • Heating above 132C will cause the material to lose it’s properties.


Manufacture & Fabrication

Comes in sheets most commonly though some companies do provide options for custom productions. The permanent shape is imprinted during production. The reaction temperature can also be controlled and altered with some shape memory polymers. The plastic can be pressed or worked like a regular thermoset plastic when cool and can be moulded like a thermoset plastic when hot.

Durability & Sustainability

The material will keep it’s shape changing properties for many cycles and will easily last in a consumer product lifetime, exact information on how long is impossible to obtain. The plastic is not currently recycled due to it’s inclusion of composites.

Find out more at CRG



Written By

James Burchill

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