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The thermoplastic (obsolete polyethylene, abbreviation PE) was discovered in 1898, but has only been used commercially in large quantities since 1957, especially in pipelines for gas and water supply, for cable insulation and in packaging materials. It is a saturated hydrocarbon. With a share of around 30%, PE is the most produced plastic worldwide. In addition to pure PE, there are also PE-LD, PE-LLD, PE-HD, PE-UHMW and PE-X in combination with other substances. PE becomes brittle due to solar radiation, but is from bacteria, Animals or plants are not degraded. Therefore, if it is not properly disposed of as "plastic waste", it contributes greatly to environmental pollution.

In viticulture, PE films are used as sealing material for alternatives closures how screw cap. Capsules and Zork, also for capsules and Bag-in-Boxes used. The polyester plastic PET (Polyethylene terephthalate) is used to manufacture bottles (PET bottles), foils and textile fibers. From the 1990s, even simpler cut wines were bottled in PET bottles. Since the valid from 2009 EU wine market is now also used for quality wines allowed. See also under PVC and PVDC,

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