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Encyclopedia > Epoxy

In chemistry, epoxy or polyepoxide is a thermosetting epoxide polymer that cures (polymerizes and crosslinks) when mixed with a catalyzing agent or "hardener". Most common epoxy resins are produced from a reaction between epichlorohydrin and bisphenol-A. The first commercial attempts to prepare resins from epichlorohydrin occurred in 1927 in the United States. Credit for the first synthesis of bisphenol-A based epoxy resins is shared by Dr. Pierre Castan of Switzerland and Dr. S.O. Greenlee in the United States in 1936. Dr. Castan's work was licensed by Ciba, Ltd. of Switzerland and Ciba went on to become one of the three major epoxy resin producers worldwide. The epoxy business of Ciba was spun-off and later sold in the late 1990s and is now the advanced materials business unit of Huntsman Corporation of the United States. Dr. Greenlee's work was for the firm of Devoe-Reynolds of the United States. Devoe-Reynolds, which was active in the early days of the epoxy resin industry, was sold to Shell Chemical (now Hexion, formerly Resolution Polymers and others). For other uses, see Chemistry (disambiguation). ... Thermosetting plastics (thermosets) refer to a range of polymer materials that cure, through the addition of energy, to a stronger form. ... An epoxide is a cyclic ether with only three ring atoms. ... A polymer (from Greek: πολυ, polu, many; and μέρος, meros, part) is a substance composed of molecules with large molecular mass composed of repeating structural units, or monomers, connected by covalent chemical bonds. ... It has been suggested that this article or section be merged into Catalysis. ... Epichlorohydrin is reactive organic compound. ... Bisphenol A is a chemical compound containing two phenol functional groups. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... Year 1927 (MCMXXVII) was a common year starting on Saturday (link will display full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Year 1936 (MCMXXXVI) was a leap year starting on Wednesday (link will display the full calendar) of the Gregorian calendar. ... Ciba Specialty Chemicals is a chemical company based in and near Basel, Switzerland. ... Huntsman Corporation is the worlds largest privately held chemical company, founded in 1970 by Jon Huntsman. ... Royal Dutch Shell plc is a multinational oil company of British and Dutch origins. ...



As of 2006, the epoxy industry amounts to more than US $5 billion in North America and about US $15 billion world-wide. The Chinese market has been grown rapidly and the market size is more than 30% of the total world-wide market. It is made up of approximately 50–100 manufacturers of basic or commodity epoxy resins and hardeners of which the three largest are Hexion (formerly Resolution Performance Products, formerly Shell Development Company; whose epoxy tradename is "Epon"), The Dow Chemical Company (tradename "D.E.R."), & Huntsman Corporation's Advanced Materials business unit (formerly Vantico, formerly Ciba Specialty Chemical; tradename "Araldite"). Very recently Huntsman corporation has been merged by Hexion (Apolo group). KUKDO Chemical is one of the largest epoxy manufacturers in Asia, and recently their capacity has been increased up to 210,000 MT/Y (Korea 150,000 MT/Y, China 60,000 MT/Y and will be increased totally 300,000 MT/Y by 2009) Naya Plastic also has the capacity of over 250,000 MT/Y (Taiwan and China) which is mostly for captive use. There are over 50 smaller epoxy manufacturers primarily producing epoxies only regionally, epoxy hardeners only, specialty epoxies, or epoxy modifiers. The United States dollar is the official currency of the United States. ... One thousand million (1,000,000,000) is the natural number following 999,999,999 and preceding 1,000,000,001. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... The Dow Chemical Company (NYSE: DOW) is a multinational corporation headquartered in Midland, Michigan, USA. In terms of market capitalization, it is the second-largest chemical company in the world, smaller than only DuPont. ...

These commodity epoxy manufacturers mentioned above typically do not sell epoxy resins in a form usable to smaller end users, so there is another group of companies that purchase epoxy raw materials from the major producers and then compounds (blends, modifies, or otherwise customizes) epoxy systems from these raw materials. These companies are known as "formulators". The majority of the epoxy systems sold are produced by these formulators and they comprise over 60% of the dollar value of the epoxy market. There are hundreds of ways that these formulators can modify epoxies — by adding mineral fillers (talc, silica, alumina, et cetera), by adding flexibilizers, viscosity reducers, colorants, thickeners, accelerators, adhesion promoters, etc. These modifications are made to reduce costs, to improve performance, and to improve processing convenience. As a result a typical formulator sells dozens or even thousands of formulations — each tailored to the requirements of a particular application or market. Manufacturing is the transformation of raw materials into finished goods for sale, or intermediate processes involving the production or finishing of semi-manufactures. ... material is the substance or matter from which something is or can be made, or also items needed for doing or creating something. ... For other uses, see Mineral (disambiguation). ... Talc (derived from the Persian via Arabic talq) is a mineral composed of hydrated magnesium silicate with the chemical formula H2Mg3(SiO3)4 or Mg3Si4O10(OH)2. ... The chemical compound silicon dioxide, also known as silica, is the oxide of silicon, chemical formula SiO2. ... Aluminium oxide (or aluminum oxide) (Al2O3) is a chemical compound of aluminium and oxygen. ... For other uses, see Viscosity (disambiguation). ... A colourant is something added to something else to induce a change in colour. ... Dew drops adhering to a spider web For the medical condition see Adhesion (medicine) Adhesion is the molecular attraction exerted between bodies in contact. ...

The applications for epoxy-based materials are extensive and include coatings, adhesives and composite materials such as those using carbon fiber and fiberglass reinforcements, (although polyester, vinyl ester, and other thermosetting resins are also used for glass-reinforced plastic). The chemistry of epoxies and the range of commercially available variations allows cure polymers to be produced with a very broad range of properties. In general, epoxies are known for their excellent adhesion, chemical and heat resistance, good-to-excellent mechanical properties and very good electrical insulating properties. Many properties of epoxies can be modified (for example silver-filled epoxies with good electrical conductivity are available, although epoxies are typically electrically insulating). For the band, see Adhesive (band). ... A cloth of woven carbon fiber filaments, a common element in composite materials Composite materials (or composites for short) are engineered materials made from two or more constituent materials with significantly different physical or chemical properties and which remain separate and distinct on a macroscopic level within the finished structure. ... Carbon fiber composite is a strong, light and very expensive material. ... Bundle of fiberglass Fiberglass (also called fibreglass and glass fibre) is material made from extremely fine fibers of glass. ... SEM picture of a bend in a high surface area polyester fiber with a seven-lobed cross section Polyester (aka Terylene) is a category of polymers which contain the ester functional group in their main chain. ... Thermosetting plastics (thermosets) are polymer materials that cure, through the addition of energy, to a stronger form. ... This article does not cite any references or sources. ... This article or section is in need of attention from an expert on the subject. ... This article is about the chemical element. ... Not to be confused with electrical conductance, a measure of an objects or circuits ability to conduct an electric current between two points, which is dependent on the electrical conductivity and the geometric dimensions of the conducting object. ...

Epoxies find significant use in many applications which are described in following sections.

Paints and coatings

Epoxies are used as powder coatings for washers, driers and other "white goods". Fusion Bonded Epoxy Powder Coatings (FBE) are extensively used for corrosion protection of steel pipes and fittings used in the oil and gas industry, potable water transmission pipelines (steel), concrete reinforcing rebar, et cetera. Epoxy coatings are also widely used as primers to improve the adhesion of automotive and marine paints especially on metal surfaces where corrosion (rusting) resistance is important. Metal cans and containers are often coated with epoxy to prevent rusting, especially for foods like tomatoes that are acidic. Epoxy resins are also used for high performance and decorative flooring applications especially terrazzo flooring, chip flooring [1] and colored aggregate flooring.[2] Powder coating is a type of dry coating, which is applied as a free-flowing, dry powder. ... // Introduction Fusion-Bonded Epoxy Powder Coatings – Commonly referred to as FBE Coatings - is one of the latest generation corrosion protection coatings widely used to protect steel pipes, rebars etc. ... A tied rebar beam cage. ... Primer can refer to more than one thing: In molecular biology, a primer is nucleic acid strand (or related molecule) that serves as a starting point for DNA replication. ... For the hazard, see corrosive. ... For alternative meanings see acid (disambiguation). ... Terrazzo with adapted Native-American design at the Hoover Dam Terrazzo is a faux-marble flooring or countertopping material. ...


Special epoxy is strong enough to withstand the extreme force transferred from a surfboard fin to the fin mount. This epoxy is waterproof and capable of curing underwater. The blue coloured epoxy on the left is still undergoing curing.

Epoxy adhesives are a major part of the class of adhesives called "structural adhesives" or "engineering adhesives" (which also includes polyurethane, acrylic, cyanoacrylate, and other chemistries.) These high performance adhesives are used in the construction of aircraft, automobiles, bicycles, boats, golf clubs, skis, snow boards, and other applications where high strength bonds are required. Epoxy adhesives can be developed to suit almost any application. They are exceptional adhesives for wood, metal, glass, stone, and some plastics. They can be made flexible or rigid, transparent or opaque/colored, fast setting or extremely slow setting. Epoxy adhesives are almost unmatched in heat and chemical resistance among common adhesives. In general, epoxy adhesives cured with heat will be more heat- and chemical-resistant than those cured at room temperature. Image File history File links Titan_epoxy. ... Image File history File links Titan_epoxy. ... A surfer carries a surfboard along the beach. ... For the band, see Adhesive (band). ... A polyurethane is any polymer consisting of a chain of organic units joined by urethane links. ... The acryl group is one of the functional groups sorted in the chemical class of acryl where one of four hydrogen atoms in ethene is replaced with a different functional group. ... A tube of Super glue Cyanoacrylate is the generic name for substances such as methyl-2-cyanoacrylate, which is typically sold under trademarks like Superglue and Krazy Glue, and 2-octyl cyanoacrylate or n-butyl-cyanoacrylate, which are used in medical glues such as Dermabond and Traumaseal. ... Transparent glass ball In optics, transparency is the property of allowing light to pass. ... A substance or object that is opaque is neither transparent nor translucent. ...

Some epoxies are cured by exposure to ultraviolet light. Such epoxies are commonly used in optics, fiber optics, and optoelectronics. Note: Ultraviolet is also the name of a 1998 UK television miniseries about vampires. ... For the book by Sir Isaac Newton, see Opticks. ... Fiber Optic strands An optical fiber in American English or fibre in British English is a transparent thin fiber for transmitting light. ... Optoelectronics is the study and application of electronic devices that interact with light, and thus is usually considered a sub-field of photonics. ...

Industrial tooling and composites

Epoxy systems are also used in industrial tooling applications to produce molds, master models, laminates, castings, fixtures, and other industrial production aids. This "plastic tooling" replaces metal, wood and other traditional materials and generally improves the efficiency and either lowers the overall cost or shortens the lead-time for many industrial processes. Epoxies are also used in producing fiber reinforced or composite parts. They are more expensive than polyester resins and vinyl ester resins, but generally produce stronger and more temperature resistant composite parts. One half of a bronze mold for casting a socketed spear head dated to the period 1400-1000 BC. There are no known parallels for this mold. ... Laminate flooring Laminated core transformer A laminate is a material constructed by uniting two or more layers of material together. ... This article is about the manufacturing process. ... In the law of real property, fixtures are anything that would otherwise be a chattel that have, by reason of incorporation or affixation, become permanently attached to the real property. ...

Electrical systems and electronics

An epoxy encapsulated hybrid circuit on a printed circuit board.

Epoxy resin formulations are also important in the electronics industry, and are employed in motors, generators, transformers, switchgear, bushings, and insulators. Epoxy resins are excellent electrical insulators and protect electrical components from short circuiting, dust and moisture. In the electronics industry, epoxy resins are the primary resin used in overmolding integrated circuits, transistors and hybrid circuits, and making printed circuit boards. The largest volume type of circuit board — an "FR-4 board" — is a sandwich of layers of glass cloth bonded into a composite by an epoxy resin. Epoxy resins are used to bond copper foil to circuit board substrates, and are a component of the solder mask on many circuit boards. Additionally, flexible epoxy resins are used for potting transformers and inductors. By using vacuum impregnation on uncured epoxy, air voids in winding to winding, winding to core and winding to insulator are eliminated. The cured epoxy, as above, is an insulator and a much better conductor of heat than air. Transformer and inductor hot spots are greatly reduced which gives the component a stable and longer life than unpotted product. Image File history File links Hybridcircuit. ... Image File history File links Hybridcircuit. ... An electronic circuit consisting of several different levels of components; printed circuits, semiconductors, resistors, capacitors etc. ... Part of a 1983 Sinclair ZX Spectrum computer board. ... Integrated circuit of Atmel Diopsis 740 System on Chip showing memory blocks, logic and input/output pads around the periphery Microchips with a transparent window, showing the integrated circuit inside. ... Assorted discrete transistors A transistor is a semiconductor device, commonly used as an amplifier or an electrically controlled switch. ... An electronic circuit consisting of several different levels of components; printed circuits, semiconductors, resistors, capacitors etc. ... Close-up photo of one side of a motherboard PCB, showing conductive traces, vias and solder points for through-hole components on the opposite side. ... FR-4, an abbreviation for Flame Retardant 4, is a type of material used for making a printed circuit board (PCB). ...

Epoxy resins are applied using the technology of resin casting. There are very few or no other articles that link to this one. ...

Consumer and marine applications

Epoxies are sold in hardware stores, typically as two component kits. They are also sold in boat shops as repair resins for marine applications. Epoxies typically are not used in the outer layer of a boat because they deteriorate by exposure to UV light. They are often used during boat repair and assembly, and then over-coated with conventional or two-part polyurethane paint or marine-varnishes that provide UV protection. Note: Ultraviolet is also the name of a 1998 UK television miniseries about vampires. ...

There are two main areas of marine use. Because of the better mechanical properties relative to the more common polyester resins, epoxies are used for commercial manufacture of components where a high strength/weight ratio is required. The second area is that their strength, gap filling properties and excellent adhesion to many materials including timber have created a boom in amateur building projects including aircraft and boats.

Normal gel coats formulated for use with polyester resins and polyester resins do not adhere to epoxy surfaces, though epoxy adheres very well if applied to polyester resin surfaces. "Flocoat" that is normally used to coat the interior of polyester fibreglass yachts is also compatible with epoxies.

Polyester thermosets typically use a ratio of at least 10:1 of resin to hardener (or "catalyst"), while epoxy materials typically use a lower ratio of between 5:1 and 1:1. Epoxy materials tend to harden somewhat more gradually, while polyester materials tend to harden quickly. SEM picture of a bend in a high surface area polyester fiber with a seven-lobed cross section Polyester (aka Terylene) is a category of polymers which contain the ester functional group in their main chain. ... Thermosetting plastics (thermosets) are polymer materials that cure, through the addition of energy, to a stronger form. ... This article is about the mathematical concept. ...

The classic epoxy reference guide is the Handbook of epoxy resins by Henry Lee and Kris Neville. Originally issued in 1967, it has been reissued repeatedly and still gives an excellent overview of the technology. Some basic tips are given here:www.epoxy.com/install.htm. Kris Ottman Neville better known as Kris Neville is a Californian science fiction writer. ...

Aerospace applications

In the aerospace industry, epoxy is used as a structural matrix material which is then reinforced by fiber. Typical fiber reinforcements include glass, carbon, Kevlar, and boron. Epoxies are also used as a structural glue. Materials like wood, and others that are 'low-tech' are glued with epoxy resin. One example, a homebuilt aircraft, would be the RJ.03 IBIS. This design is based on a classic wooden lattice structured fuselage and a classic wooden spar, internally stiffened with foam and completely covered with plywood. Except for the plywood covering the wings, everything is glued with epoxy resin.


Structure of unmodified epoxy prepolymer. n denotes the number of polymerized subunits and is in the range from 0 to about 25

When epoxy is mixed with the appropriate catalyst, the resulting reaction is exothermic, and the oxygen on the epoxy monomers is "flipped." This occurs throughout the epoxy, and a matrix with a high stress tolerance is formed, and "glues" the materials together. Image File history File links Download high resolution version (7140x1718, 59 KB) Description: chemical structure of Epoxy prepolymer Author: Cacycle Date of creation: 2 March 2006 (UTC) Source: selfmade Copyright: GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL) Creative Commons License (attribution, sharealike, 2. ... Image File history File links Download high resolution version (7140x1718, 59 KB) Description: chemical structure of Epoxy prepolymer Author: Cacycle Date of creation: 2 March 2006 (UTC) Source: selfmade Copyright: GNU Free Documentation License (GFDL) Creative Commons License (attribution, sharealike, 2. ...

Health risks

The primary risk associated with epoxy use is sensitization to the hardener, which, over time, can induce an allergic reaction.

Both epichlorohydrin and bisphenol A are suspected endocrine disruptors. Endocrine disruptors are substances which interfere with the endocrine system by mimicking, blocking or otherwise disrupting the function of hormones. ...

According to some reports [3] Bisphenol A is linked to the following effects in humans:

  • oestrogenic activity;
  • alteration of male reproductive organs;
  • early puberty induction;
  • shortened duration of breast feeding;
  • pancreatic cancer

See also

Thermosetting plastics (thermosets) are polymer materials that cure, through the addition of energy, to a stronger form. ... For other uses, see Plastic (disambiguation). ...


  1. ^ [1]
  2. ^ [2]
  3. ^ Greenpeace 2006 April Report "Our reproductive health and chemical exposure"

External links

  • Epoxy Resin health hazards (California Department of Health Services)
  • The chemistry of epoxide, simple to understand

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