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Tackifiers for Hot Melt Adhesives

SpecialChem / Jan 15, 2003

Tackifiers are a unique class of materials that are commonly used in certain adhesive formulations. They normally have low molecular weights and are resinous, but they have glass transition and softening temperatures that are often significantly above room temperature. It is this combination of properties that make these materials useful for imparting "tack" and desirable viscoelastic properties in the formulation of hot melt and pressure sensitive adhesives. Tackifiers are a principal component used to vary and refine both performance and processing properties of these adhesives. This paper will discuss the use of tackifiers in hot melt adhesive formulations. The tackifier is frequently the most significant component in a hot melt adhesive in terms of both weight percentage and cost. However, the cost is not all due to the materials cost. The cost of qualifying tackifiers can be significant. Often an expensive and time consuming "design of experiments" approach is necessary to balance all of the properties that are affected by the addition of a tackifier.

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