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Addressing Silicone Contamination Issues

SpecialChem / Edward M. Petrie & Edward Petrie – Jan 6, 2014

This article will address the various issues related to silicone contamination including its mechanism in disrupting good adhesion, detection methods, and cleaning processes. The best policy is to avoid silicone contamination to keep problems from occurring in the first place. As a result, preventive contamination strategies will also be disclosed. It is the author’s experience that in the majority of unexpected adhesive failures, improper surface condition is the culprit. Often the adhesive or coating material or curing process is blamed, but in actuality a weak boundary layer is the root of the failure. Unfortunately weak boundary layers are common and take many forms. Perhaps the most insidious of contamination problems is due to silicone because of its propensity to wet nearly any surface and because of the adhesive’s or coating’s inability to bond to silicone.

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