Improving Flow and System Stability

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Dry mineral formulations for resin systems are largely designed to meet functional performance criteria in individual installation environments.  System architects will be seeking to make the formulation as easy to handle as is possible.

Solid Glass Spheres are added to the resin system mix to lower its viscosity, acting as miniature internal ball bearings. This improves flow and assists with the application process.

Bringing together a number of dry mineral products and combining them with a liquid resin to produce the floor’s characteristics requires an amount of skill and know-how to assure the system performs as intended.  Chemical products can also be added to reduce the formulation’s viscosity; being a physical flow aid, the use of Solid Glass Spheres as an alternative can also reduce the amount of resin required in the mixture.

The smaller sizes of Solid Glass Spheres, 0-63 micron, 53-106 micron and 75 – 150 micron, will generally be used in the 2.0 – 4.0mm self-levelling resin systems while the larger sizes, 106 – 212 micron, 150 – 250 micron, 250 – 425 micron and 425 – 850, tend to be used in the larger installations.

Solid Glass Spheres also give dimensional stability. Better stress distribution is achieved from the use of a spherically shaped particle. This behavior is illustrated when assessing the stress patterns in cured epoxy resins compounded with the three different classes of substances commonly mixed into plastics: fibers, irregular particles and spheres.

With solid glass spheres, the stress pattern is regular and predictable, showing less localised stress concentrations.

A molded part can shrink in any of its three dimensions. Owing to the directional orientation of the fibers, glass fiber-filled parts normally have different shrinkage rates for different directions.

Shrinkage measured along the length of the fiber is very low; across the fiber it is usually quite high. Therefore, the dimensional stability of glass fiber-filled parts is partially dependent on the flow of material into the mold.

The non-directional orientation of spheres produces a more uniform shrinkage rate throughout the part and the isotropic nature of spheres results in more predictable manufacturing quality.