Type 4 –


Type 4

What Is ETFE (Foil/Film)?

Ethylene Tetrafluoroethylene (ETFE) is a fluorine-based plastic polymer that offers a creative and lightweight alternative to glass. Developed over 40 years ago by DuPont, ETFE has similar light transmission to glass, but at just 1% of the weight. With a lifespan of over 30 years and excellent weathering properties, ETFE film is becoming the material of choice for a outdoor and outdoor/indoor spaces in a variety of climates.

What are the advantages of ETFE?

ETFE has many benefits, ranging from environmental sustainability to creative design options.

What is ETFE used for?

Durability benefits of ETFE

  • 1% the weight of glass and typically costs 40%-50% less than traditional glass structures
  • Supporting structure can be lightweight because material is lightweight
  • Working temperature range of -300 F to 300 F/-185 C to 150 C
  • Accelerated weathering test of 30 years’ exposure showed almost no signs of deterioration
  • The oldest ETFE structure is in Europe and is approaching 40 years old

Environmental benefits of ETFE

  • ETFE is 100% recyclable
  • ETFE from previous projects can be reused in new projects
  • Reduces heat and solar gain
  • Excellent shading properties with fritted ETFE to reduce solar heat gain
  • The ETFE manufacturing process requires reduced materials and energy

Maintenance benefits of ETFE

  • High corrosion resistance
  • Resistant to chemicals, electricity, and radiation
  • Self-cleaning, due to its non-stick surface
  • Tears can be repaired with patches and panels, removing the need to replace the entire ETFE film

Lighting benefits of ETFE

  • Up to 95% transparent
  • Facilitates transmission of natural light
  • Light is dispersed and scattered, reducing heat and solar gain with fritted ETFE
  • Transmits UV light without incurring damage from UV rays to the ETFE
  • Great for landscaping, because it does not impede the UV rays needed for plant growth

Safety benefits of ETFE

  • Maintains strength in wide temperature variances
  • Relatively high melting temperature of approximately 500 F/260 C)
  • Self-extinguishing in case of fire
  • Passes ASTM E 84, Class “A” material

Design benefits of ETFE

  • Flexible
  • Can be stretched up to 3x and remain taut with variation in size
  • Can be shaped into curvatures
  • Can have multiple, movable layers
  • Can incorporate LED lighting and flexible photovoltaic cells for dynamic lighting effects
  • Standard and custom printing options
  • A metallic based and reflective frit can be applied for highly dramatic effects when underlit
  • Acoustic transmission of approximately 70%
  • Can be designed to be reactive to the environment

Type 4A
Waterproof ‘ETFE’ Foil Membrane


Type 4B
Waterproof ‘EcTFE’ Foil Membrane

How is ETFE used?

Single-layer ETFE: ETFE raw granulate is extruded into a single layer of film or foil. The film is tensioned on a lightweight aluminum framing.

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