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New Epoxy Tougheners Widen the Adhesive-Formulating Window

SpecialChem / Aug 7, 2002

Since their introduction in the late 1940s, epoxy resins have found widespread use in adhesives, sealants, flooring, paints and electrical applications. The versatility of epoxy-resin systems arises from the large number of combinations of epoxy resins and curing agents, each of which results in a different molecular structure in the resulting polymer. Even with a greatly variable molecular structure, epoxies generally share adhesion to a wide range of substrates, resistance to a wide range of chemicals and excellent mechanical properties. Modification of epoxy-resin systems by additives, modifiers, fillers, plasticizers and other polymers offers vast opportunities to further customize the attributes of these materials. These positive attributes and easily varied structure allow formulators the opportunity to tailor a resin system's handling, cure behavior and cured performance over a tremendous range.Today, elastomer-modified epoxy resins play a critical role in adhesives and damage-resistant coatings. The toughening mechanisms of elastomer-modified epoxy systems are different from flexibilized epoxy systems and can be used in combination with them.

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