Light-Curable Adhesives vs. Silicones
Are you trying to choose the best adhesive for your application or looking for an alternative to the current one you’re using? If you’re comparing between a light-curable adhesive and a one-part-silicone, which material should you choose? The challenge is finding the correct one for your application and unique set of circumstances, but the decision may not be as difficult as you think.
Here are five criteria to consider:
Fast Cure Speeds - Light-curable adhesives are inherently fast with cure times measured in seconds. Once exposed to light, they have a curing time from 1-30 seconds, while one-part silicones typically reach a tack-free state in around 15 minutes. In addition, silicones can take hours to set up and days to fully cure. Spending less time putting a product together will automatically decrease your production costs.
Strong Bonds - When fully cured, light-curable adhesives have very strong bonding qualities. Their typical tensile pull-off adhesion strength is 100-4,000 psi, while the maximum strength of one part-silicones is 500 psi.
Effect of Humidity on Cure - Since light-curable adhesives cure on demand, humidity does not affect them. On the other hand, moisture-cured silicones often require humidity chambers and the humidity greatly affects their cure speed, making it difficult or costly to control.
Long Shelf Life - On average light-curable adhesives have a one-year shelf-life. One-part silicone last for half that much – three to six months, on average. The longer shelf life automatically translates into easier logistics and higher cost savings. In addition, moisture-cured silicones can “spoil” prior to use if exposed to humidity.
Silicone Contamination - Silicones can migrate across an entire plant affecting the wetting and adhesion of surfaces that require coating or bonding. Using a light-curable adhesive can help eliminate any chance of contamination.
Need help choosing the right adhesive for your application?
Dymax Application Engineers can offer manufacturers assistance and analysis of their complex applications and provide guidance on selecting the right adhesive for their process.