Silicone rubber is made from specific silicones to form an elastic synthetic rubber that is suitable for a wide range of uses. To bring out its rubber-like characteristics, the raw silicone goes through some unique refining procedures. Doing so allows for better flexibility and elasticity of the final product. Once the refining is complete, manufacturers can then mold and shape it as they’d like.
Although silicone rubber is an excellent material for your manufacturing tasks, there are a few practical limitations. Poor tear strength and cure inhibition are some of the most common challenges of using silicon rubber. Luckily, with some fabrication tweaks, the refined silicone rubber offers significant advantages compared to other rubber types. Here are three main industrial-specific advantages of silicone rubber.
1. Physical Resilience and Thermal Stability
Silicone rubber has a chemical structure that is a mixture of both oxygen and silicon atoms. The bonds from these atoms give silicone rubber its desirable physical properties with a good thermal performance.
As a result, silicone rubber offers exceptional thermal stability and can withstand very high or very low temperatures. The rubber can still retain its physical and chemical properties under these temperature extremities — a remarkable feat for many industrial tasks. For instance, the rubber can withstand high oil temperatures in engine-based operations without affecting the system performance.
Additionally, silicone can also endure the effects of substances such as bases, acids, strong chemicals, and water. Combined with heat resistance, silicone rubber is an excellent choice for various industrial uses where such substances are common.
Silicone rubber is also stable and resilient. Therefore, the rubber can serve you for a long time, significantly lowering your production costs. Silicone isn’t toxic and can be used as a sealant for consumer goods.
2. Remarkable Versatility
Molding silicone is easy. You can craft and customize molded shapes to use in specific applications that require unique fabrication techniques. The complex molds require you to inject liquid silicone rubber (LSR) inside a mold cavity to form the desired product. LSR is available in different forms, tailored to offer self-lubricating benefits, radio-opaque properties, and good electrical conductivity.
Interestingly, you can manipulate silicone rubber to give you different color options, including a translucent appearance. Also, new silicone rubber molds dry quickly at normal temperatures, making the rubber an economically viable option for your manufacturing needs.
Design engineers prefer silicone rubber for such versatile characteristics. The all-around advantages make silicone rubber ideal for crafting innovative models for various testing applications. Moreover, reputable rubber experts can fabricate complex parts using advanced techniques such as injection and compression molding. They do so by taking advantage of the high flexibility silicone rubber offers.
3. Solid Sterilization Capabilities
Sterilization is crucial in eliminating the spread of dangerous infections. You can sterilize silicone through standard sterilization techniques such as gamma radiation and using ethylene oxide.
Because of its sterilization abilities, silicone rubber is widely used in the medical field. As such, the rubber is ideal for manufacturing equipment such as medical pumps, IV units, and dialyzers.
The medical-grade standards mean that silicone rubber doesn’t have any severe effects once it gets into contact with human skin. Also, renowned rubber manufacturers often perform tests to verify the sterility of medical rubber seals before they are eligible for use in the medical industry.
However, you should note that silicone rubber has poor tear strength and is prone to abrasions over time. Our rubber fabrication experts at Accurate Products keep this in mind and work to improve the rubber’s tear strength. We pride ourselves in providing you with high-quality rubber, guaranteed to serve you better and for longer.