Cross Linked Polyethylene Foam (XLPE): Properties, Types & Applications

​Cross Linked Polyethylene Foam (XLPE Foam) Material Guide: Properties, Types & Applications

​Cross-linked polyethylene foam (XLPE) is a highly-versatile, flexible, and useful closed-cell foam. Read more about Frank Lowe's custom, die cut XLPE foam.

Cross-linked polyethylene foam (XLPE) is a highly-versatile, flexible, and useful closed-cell foam characterized by a resistance to water and a compact feel.

Request a free quote and sample of this product

Since 1955, Frank Lowe has been partnering with businesses across all markets to produce state-of-the-art industrial manufacturing solutions. We offer dedicated industrial contract manufacturing teams who specialize in providing comprehensive services to a variety of markets.From best-in-class materials, customizable products, and a full suite of industrial manufacturing services, we provide whatever it takes to help your business met its objectives. Regardless of the technical or logistics demands of your project, we will work with you every step of the way providing customizable distribution services and support to ensure the contract die cutting is completed and delivered on time, within budget, and to your exact specifications.

With several of the same properties demonstrated as polyethylene foam, XLPE foam elevates its profile with the ability to protect Class A surfaces, which is one of the reasons it’s such a highly prized material in the packaging of medical equipment and products.

Cross-linked polyethylene foam is exceptionally fine celled and suitable for projects that require thicker foam. It boasts a smooth and pleasant feel combined with outstanding chemical and physical properties, which makes it the preferred solution for several applications where thicker sections of closed cell foam are required.

Let’s take a closer look at cross-linked polyethylene foam and some of its most common applications.

Cross-Linked Polyethylene Foam Applications & Markets

With its closed-cell density, XLPE foam performs well commercially as industrial gaskets, thermal insulation, and construction expansion joints.

As previously mentioned, cross-linked polyethylene foam is also commonly used in the packaging industry as well as in floatation devices — thanks to its high buoyancy and low moisture permeability.

A few of the most common applications of cross-linked polyethylene foam include:

  • Building and construction of special application playground padding, eaves filler strips, and more.
  • General industrial applications for radar spacers, appliance insulation and gaskets, protective padding, and artifact protective packaging solutions.
  • Transportation industry for glass packaging, automotive pads for anti-rattling, waterproof cushions, marine bumpers and buoys, and gaskets.
  • Health care industry for prosthetic padding, orthopedic padding, suture counters, wheelchair pads, and more.
  • Sports and leisure industry for body armor, Kayak construction, personal watercraft seats, shoulder straps for backpacks, and more.

Key Characteristics of Cross-Linked Polyethylene Foam

Cross linked polyethylene foam is also known as Volara, Microcell, Zotefoam, and XLPE foam.

Regardless of the name used on this versatile material, it has a virtually infinite number of potential applications because of the following desirable characteristics:





Thermal Conductivity







Sound Absorption

Uniform Cell Structure

Dimensional Stability

Ozone Friendly

Shatter Proof

Puncture Resistant

Tear Resistant

Shock Absorption

Vibration Dampening

Impact Resistance

Bacteria Resistant

Mold Resistant

Oil & Solvent Resistant

Different Types of XLPE Foams - Microcell, Zotefoams & Volara

Frank Lowe’ offers cross linked polyethylene foams in a vast range of densities and thicknesses.

You can choose from an expansive number of different colors as well as with different additives and in different formulations, such as:

  • Anti-static cross linked polyethylene foam
  • Fire retardant XLPE foam formulations
  • Conductive cross linked polyethylene foam

We also supply, convert and fabricate a myriad of different types of cross linked polyethylene foams, including:

  • Microcell
  • Zotefoams
  • Volara

Even if we don’t have the exact brand of XLPE foam you need, simply let us know, and we’ll provide a solution. All of our foams can be die cut, embossed, laminated, and enhanced with a pressure-sensitive adhesive.

Order Die Cut Cross Linked Polyethylene Foam

Frank Lowe offers branded and non-branded cross linked polyethylene foam in bun, roll, plank, and sheet forms across a range of different densities. We utilize state-of-the-art equipment and processes to create precise die cuts based on your specific requirements.

In the event you don’t have specifications, the team at Frank Lowe can still help! We can use our custom CAD generated design program and laser die cutting or water jet die cutting to create your initial prototype.

At Frank Lowe, we provide a range of different custom fabrication services and solutions designed to move your project from start to finish.

Common Methods of Fabrication of XLPE Foams

In addition to die cutting foam, thermoforming and compression molding are of the most common methods of fabrication used with XLPE foams. The crosslinking of XLPE foam bolsters its temperature stability, resilience, and elasticity, which allows it to be utilized in a vast range of temperatures.

Whenever products and components are manufactured via compression molding and thermoforming, XLPE will have a unique finish that is aesthetically pleasing with the unparalleled ability to provide cushioning and support. 

Contact Frank Lowe for Cross Linked Polyethylene Foam

Regardless of the brand, shape, density, color, or thickness of XLPE foam you need — Frank Lowe can help. By partnering with us, you’ll gain access to over 60 years of quality production experience. Our experienced product engineers and technicians will get to understand your application and guide you to the best solution. We’ll help you think outside of the box and:

  1. Explore different thicknesses, shapes and brand of XLPE foams as well as other potential materials.
  2. Pursue each potential option with a feasibility, performance and cost-benefit analysis.
  3. Create your component, gasket, or product that will offer the best performance and remain within your budget.

Read to get started? Get started today by contacting Frank Lowe for hassle-free, no-obligation consultation.

Request a free quote and sample of this product