How can epoxy resin be defined?

Epoxy resin is a plastic material produced by polymerizing epoxy resin monomers with hardeners. It is characterized by high strength, hardness, chemical resistance and adhesion to various surfaces. Epoxy resin is used in a wide range of applications, from construction to art, and can be in the form of liquid, paste or solid materials. It is known for its ability to bond to various substrates and is often used for coatings, adhesives, mould making, electronics and other applications.

The properties of epoxy resin can vary depending on the specific formulation, as different types of epoxy resins and curing agents exist, designed for different requirements and applications. Epoxy resins are widely used in many industries, including construction, aerospace, electronics, art, automotive, electrical and electronics, and various craft and home improvement projects.

Epoxy resin discharged via Shot
Epoxy resin is discharged by means of a shot

What is epoxy resin used for in dispensing technology?

Epoxy resin is used in many industries. Dispensing and mixing systems process it in these applications, among others:

Coatings and sealants:
Epoxy resins are often metered and applied to surfaces to seal them or to level out irregularities, for example in composites components such as rotor blades for wind turbines or for the automotive industry.

Epoxy resins serve as high-strength adhesives and are used in dispensing technology to join parts or materials. They provide excellent adhesion and are used in the manufacturing of vehicles, electronics, aircraft and other industries.

In the electronics industry, epoxy resins are used to seal and encapsulate electronic components.

PCB manufacturing:
In the electronics industry, epoxy resins are dispensed to manufacture circuit boards and assemble electronic components.

In all of these applications, precise dispensing of epoxy is critical to achieve the desired properties and results. Dispensing systems are used to mix and apply the right amount of epoxy and hardener, ensuring consistent quality and performance.

What properties does epoxy resin bring with it for processing in dispensing technology?

Epoxy resins bring with them a number of properties that make them particularly suitable for processing in dispensing technology. Here are some important properties of epoxy resins:

Epoxy resins have excellent adhesion to a variety of surfaces, including metal, concrete, wood, glass, ceramics and many plastics. This allows them to be applied and dispensed to a wide variety of substrates.

Chemical Resistance:
Epoxy resins are resistant to a wide range of chemicals, making them suitable for applications in aggressive environments where chemical resistance is required.

Mechanical strength:
They offer high mechanical strength and hardness, making them useful for structural applications and as adhesives.

Dimensional stability:
Epoxy resins tend to be dimensionally stable after curing, meaning they maintain their shape and dimensions and do not warp or shrink easily.

Low shrinkage:
During the curing process, many epoxy resins exhibit low shrinkage, which means they shrink minimally during curing, allowing for precise results.

Good electrical insulation:
Because of their electrical insulation properties, epoxy resins are used in the electronics industry to seal electronic components.

Temperature resistance:
Some epoxy resins are temperature resistant and can be used at high or low temperatures without affecting their strength or chemical stability.

Good flow properties:
Epoxy resins can be mixed and dispensed in liquid form with suitable hardeners, making processing and application easier.

Transparent or color stable:
Depending on requirements, epoxy resins can be colored transparent or color-stable to meet aesthetic requirements.

There are a variety of epoxy formulations designed for different applications, including liquid, paste or solid variants that can be customized to meet specific requirements.

These properties make epoxy resins a popular choice in dispensing technology for a wide range of applications, including coatings, adhesives, electronics and more. The exact selection of the right epoxy resin depends on the requirements of the application, and a variety of formulations are available to meet those requirements.

Which industries and markets benefit from the processing of epoxy resin?

Epoxy resin processing has applications in a wide variety of industries and markets, as epoxy resins can be used beneficially in many areas due to their versatile properties and wide range of applications. Listed below are some of the industries and markets that benefit from epoxy resin processing:

In the electronics industry, epoxy resins are used for manufacturing printed circuit boards, sealing electronic components and potting components.

Automotive industry:
Epoxy resins are used in the manufacture of composites, adhesives for automotive assembly, coatings for body panels, and vehicle repair.

Epoxy resins are used in the aerospace industry for lightweight structural materials, composites and adhesives.

epoxy resins are used in medical devices, dental applications and for the manufacture of medical models.

Epoxy resins are used in transformers, switchgear and other electrical applications for insulation and cooling.

Plastics and composites:
Epoxy resins are used in the manufacture of composites, fiber-reinforced composites and glass-fiber reinforced plastics.

This list is by no means exhaustive, as the versatility of epoxy resins means they have applications in many industries and markets where precise dispensing, excellent adhesion and chemical resistance are required. The wide range of formulations allows epoxy resins to be tailored to the specific requirements of different applications.

When does epoxy resin gel?

The gel time of epoxy resin refers to the point during the curing process at which the resin assumes a viscous or gel-like consistency and no longer flows. This is an important milestone in the curing process of epoxy resin and marks the transition from the liquid phase to the solid or rubbery phase

The gel time of epoxy resin can vary from product to product and depends on various factors, including the specific formulation of the epoxy resin, the ambient temperature and the hardener chosen. In general, gel time is an important piece of information provided on product labels or technical data sheets.

It is important to note that gel time should be distinguished from pot life, working time, and full curing time of epoxy resin:

Pot Life:
This is the amount of time after which the epoxy resin and hardener have been mixed and the curing process begins.

Processing time:
This is the time during which the epoxy resin can still be safely processed and applied after mixing.

Gelling time:
This is the point at which the epoxy resin loses its liquid consistency and turns into a gel-like state.

Full cure time:
This is the amount of time it takes for the epoxy to fully cure and reach its final mechanical properties.

The exact gel time of epoxy resin may vary depending on the factors mentioned above. It is important to follow the manufacturer's specific instructions and carefully monitor the curing process to ensure the epoxy is processed at the right time to the desired consistency.