Silicone Rubber Parts
Silicone rubber parts create seals for electrical devices that resist aging and environmental stress. It is also useful in establishing watertight barriers and showerheads that are resistant to bacteria.
Manufacturers use liquid silicone rubber, or LSR, to create injection molded parts. This unique material is a two-part platinum-cured elastomer with excellent fluidity.
The silicone rubber’s high flexibility allows it to be used in a variety of ways. Its softness helps protect the metal and other parts in electrical devices such as cords, plugs, and connectors from shock and vibration. It is also used in vehicles to cushion the impact of sudden stops and turns. It can also reduce noise and vibration, especially in motors and transmissions. Additionally, it is resistant to oils and chemicals and won’t stain.
Silicone rubber is available in many different forms and grades based on its intended application. It is usually made from a polymer such as PDMS and can be transformed through various manufacturing processes Silicone rubber parts to create specific characteristics such as hardness or elasticity, color, or degree of transparency. These alterations are accomplished by adding different groups such as phenyl, methyl, or fluoro to the PDMS chains during its synthesis.
Liquid silicone rubber (LSR) is often used in medical applications because of its chemical inertness and stability in demanding environments. It is particularly useful for products such as tubing and protective wound coverings. Additionally, it is a good choice for orthopedic padding and medical devices that come into direct contact with the body due to its lubricity and biocompatibility.
A one-stop rapid manufacturer such as WayKen can help transform liquid silicone rubber into various components with varying levels of functionality. These can include silicone rubber gaskets, seals, and hoses for automotive & rail applications as well as silicone sponge rubber that provides shock resistance. Other features can include conductive properties, odor and taste suppression, and flame retardancy capabilities such as those in HT800 silicone rubber designed for London Underground applications.
High Temperature Resistance
Silicone rubber parts can withstand extreme temperature conditions that would melt other types of materials. They also remain flexible in conditions that would cause them to deform other materials. These properties make silicone an excellent insulator and are used for wire and cable insulation, connector seals, and switch boots. It is also resistant to corrosion and resists cracking from heat, oil, and vibration.
High-temperature silicone rubber can be compounded with reinforcing fillers, such as fumed titanium oxide; non-reinforcing fillers, including ground quartz, crystalline silica, diatomaceous earth, asbestos, and aluminosilicates; and other additives like pigments, flame retardants, internal release agents, plasticizers, and non-functional silicone oils. It can also be made radio opaque by adding barium sulfate. This allows the silicone part to be detected under X-rays, making it useful for medical applications, such as wound drains and catheters.
LSR is available in a variety of grades, each with unique characteristics that make it better for specific applications. It can be over-molded with engineering plastics to reduce assembly components or improve performance, and it is compatible with many substrates, such as glass filled nylons and stainless steel. It can even bond to metals, which makes it an ideal material for composite seals.
Silicone rubber is a versatile and durable material that has many uses in industry, aerospace, automotive, and consumer products. It can withstand high temperatures, is easy to clean, and works well with food containers and utensils.
Silicone rubber is a synthetic elastomer with a broad spectrum of uses. It can withstand very high temperatures without becoming brittle or melting. It can also flex and return to its original dimensions after long periods of compression. This memory is important for seals and closures where the material must remain intact.
In addition to its temperature resistance, silicone rubber is flame retardant and self-extinguishing. It can be used in electronics and business equipment that must operate safely in closed spaces like aircraft and subways. It can also handle corrosive chemicals and solvents. The odorless and colorless nature of silicone rubber also makes it an excellent choice for medical devices and consumer products.
Shock absorption is another benefit of silicone rubber. It protects electrical components, wiring and plastic pieces from damage caused by vibration and intense movement. For military applications, such as power generators and propulsion engines, silicone rubber shock absorbers are vital for safety and efficiency.
Silicone rubber can be formed into a variety of shapes using injection molding, compression molding and liquid injection molding (LIM). LIM is particularly ideal for producing precise Silicone rubber parts parts because it is less viscous than HCRs and is pumpable, making it possible to fill a mold with silicone. The resulting parts are consistent and accurate in dimension. It’s also easier to control the curing process and achieve a more even surface finish.
Unlike many plastics, silicone doesn’t break down into small pieces that can get into the environment and cause harm. It’s also not brittle and can withstand significant force without damage or cracking. This durability gives silicone a long lifespan and makes it a popular choice for sealants, adhesives, and caulks.
Silicone rubber’s flexibility, low surface energy, and non-polar nature give it good adhesion to a wide variety of surfaces. It bonds well to glass, metals, and ceramics and adheres to damp or greasy surfaces where other materials can’t. It’s also highly resistant to radiation and UV rays.
Liquid silicone rubbers have varying chemical and thermal properties depending on their composition and type of processing. Some are designed for electrical insulation, while others are engineered for abrasion resistance. Generally, general purpose LSRs have lower temperature resistance than specialty types.
It’s essential that mold designs and process equipment consider the ejection requirements of silicone parts. The correct draft angles and reducing undercuts will ensure easy, smooth, and consistent ejection from the molding tool. After molding, silicone rubber must be properly cured to solidify and achieve the desired physical properties. This can be accomplished using a variety of equipment, including inspection machines with cameras and sensors, molding presses, extrusion equipment, and curing ovens.