Rubber Gaskets Explained: Essential Sealing Solutions for Every Industry

Rubber Gaskets are mechanical seals that are made from elastomeric materials with a flat surface area. They are designed to fill the space between two or more mating surfaces. They are typically used in static applications. They are used to prevent fluids from leaking out, under various operating conditions, while also blocking contaminants from entering the system. Rubber gaskets are essential components in numerous applications, providing reliable sealing solutions in a wide range of industries.

Applications of Rubber Gaskets as Sealing Solutions

Rubber gaskets are used extensively as sealing solutions due to their flexibility, resilience, and ability to withstand different environmental conditions. Here are some key industries where rubber gaskets are crucial:

  1. Automotive Industry: Rubber gaskets are used in engines, transmissions, and exhaust systems to prevent oil, coolant, and gas leaks. They are also found in doors and windows to provide weatherproof seals. They are used in places that require a low-pressure seal for passive components. 
  2. Aerospace Industry: In aerospace applications, rubber gaskets are used to seal aircraft windows, doors, and fuel systems, propellants and oxidizer systems – ensuring safety and performance at high altitudes and varying pressures.
  3. Oil and Gas Industry: Rubber gaskets are employed in pipelines, valves, and flanges to prevent leakage of oil and gas under high pressure and temperature conditions.
  4. Chemical Industry: These gaskets are used in chemical processing equipment to prevent leakage of hazardous chemicals and ensure the integrity of the system.
  5. Food and Beverage Industry: Rubber gaskets are used in food processing and packaging machinery to prevent contamination and maintain hygiene standards.
  6. Pharmaceutical Industry: In pharmaceutical manufacturing, rubber gaskets ensure the purity of products by preventing contamination during processing and packaging.
  7. Plumbing Applications: EPDM and Nitrile gaskets are used in plumbing systems to ensure leak-free connections. Rubber gaskets are a good choice in water utility and plumbing applications because they are affordable and are resistant to corrosion, water and chlorides. 

Materials Used in Manufacturing Rubber Gaskets

Rubber gaskets are made from various elastomeric materials, each chosen for its specific properties and suitability for different applications. Common materials include:

    1. Natural Rubber (NR): Natural Rubber Gaskets possess good tear, abrasion and shear resistance. 
    2. Nitrile Rubber (NBR): Nitrile rubber offers excellent resistance to oils, fuels, and other chemicals, making it ideal for automotive and industrial applications.
  • Chloroprene (CR): Chloroprene gaskets are resistant to high aniline point oils, petroleum solvents and harsh climates and conditions. It has good mechanical properties over a wide temperature range from -40 deg C to 121 deg C.
  1. Silicone Rubber: Silicone gaskets can withstand high temperatures and are used in applications requiring thermal stability and resistance to UV and ozone. It is mainly used in the automotive, medical and food industry. 
  2. Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer (EPDM): EPDM rubber is resistant to weathering, ozone, and water, making it suitable for outdoor and automotive applications.
  3. FKM (Viton): Viton gaskets are highly resistant to chemicals, heat, and oil, commonly used in chemical processing and aerospace industries.
  4. PTFE (Teflon): PTFE Gaskets or more commonly known as Teflon gaskets possess outstanding chemical resistance. Since PTFE is hydrophobic and possesses a low coefficient of friction, Teflon gaskets are used for their non-stick properties. PTFE gaskets are also widely used against corrosive environments.

Types of Rubber Gaskets

Rubber gaskets come in various types, each designed for specific sealing requirements:

  1. Full-Face or Flat-Face Gaskets: These gaskets cover the entire flange surface and are used in applications where a complete seal is necessary. It is commonly used in applications requiring a broad sealing area to prevent leakage and withstand higher pressures.
  2. Ring Type Joint Gaskets: Ring gaskets, also known as ring-type joints (RTJs), are used in high-pressure applications. They fit into a groove on the flange face.
  3. Spiral Wound Gaskets: These gaskets consist of a mixture of metal and filler material wound in a spiral shape. They are used in high-pressure and high-temperature applications.
  4. Envelope Gaskets: These gaskets combine the low friction and chemical stability of PTFE with the mechanical strength of the inner rubber material. These gaskets are widely used in the Food & Beverage Industry as well as the Pharmaceutical and chemical industry. PTFE envelope gaskets can be removed easily and quickly without residue from the flange faces and new gaskets can be installed in no time.

Selection Criteria for Rubber Gaskets

Selecting the right rubber gasket for a specific application involves considering various factors to ensure optimal performance and longevity. The following criteria are essential when choosing a rubber gasket:

1. Operating Environment

  • Temperature: Determine the maximum and minimum temperatures the gasket will be exposed to. Different materials have varying temperature resistance.
  • Pressure: Assess the pressure conditions. High-pressure applications might require more robust gaskets like spiral wound or ring gaskets.
  • Chemical Exposure: Identify the chemicals the gasket will come into contact with. Materials like PTFE or FKM are suitable for highly corrosive environments.

2. Material Compatibility

  • Rubber Type: Select the rubber type based on its chemical and physical properties. For example, Nitrile rubber (NBR) is excellent for oil resistance, while EPDM is suitable for weather and ozone resistance.
  • PTFE and Teflon: These materials offer excellent chemical resistance and are used in highly corrosive environments.

3. Mechanical Properties

  • Hardness: Measured in Shore A, hardness affects the gasket’s ability to compress and seal under pressure. Applications requiring flexibility might need softer gaskets.
  • Tensile Strength: Important for applications subjected to stretching or pulling forces.
  • Compression Set: The gasket’s ability to return to its original thickness after being compressed. A low compression set is desirable for maintaining a good seal over time.

4. Design and Dimensions

  • Size and Shape: Ensure the gasket dimensions match the flange or mating surfaces. Custom shapes may be required for specific applications.
  • Thickness: The thickness of the gasket can affect its sealing ability. Thicker gaskets can fill larger gaps but may require more compression force.

5. Application-Specific Requirements

  • Food and Pharmaceutical: Gaskets used in these industries need to comply with regulatory standards such as FDA approvals for food-grade materials.
  • Outdoor Exposure: Applications exposed to weather elements should use materials resistant to UV, ozone, and other environmental factors.
  • Electrical Insulation: In applications where electrical insulation is necessary, materials like silicone rubber may be preferred.

6. Cost and Availability

  • Budget: Consider the cost of the gasket material and its lifespan. Sometimes a more expensive material can offer better performance and longevity, reducing overall costs.
  • Availability: Ensure the selected gasket material is readily available to avoid delays in manufacturing or maintenance.

Summary of Rubber Gasket Applications

Rubber gaskets are versatile and find applications across various industries:

  • Automotive and Aerospace: Used in engines, transmissions, fuel systems, and as weatherproof seals in doors and windows.
  • Oil and Gas: Essential for sealing pipelines, valves, and flanges to prevent leaks and ensure safety.
  • Chemical Processing: Used to seal reactors, pumps, and valves, ensuring no leakage of hazardous substances.
  • Food and Beverage: Ensuring contamination-free processing and packaging by sealing machinery parts.
  • Pharmaceuticals: Maintaining product purity during manufacturing and packaging processes.

Conclusion

Rubber gaskets are indispensable components in a myriad of applications, offering reliable sealing solutions across industries. Understanding their materials, types, and specific uses can help in selecting the right gasket for any sealing requirement. Whether in automotive, aerospace, oil and gas, chemical, food and beverage, or pharmaceutical industries, rubber gaskets play a crucial role in ensuring operational efficiency and safety.

How is Rubber Made?

Rubber is a resilient elastic polymer that is obtained from natural and synthetic sources. Rubber is widely used in tyres, seals, footwear, hoses etc. 

Rubber is a resilient elastic polymer that is obtained from natural and synthetic sources. Rubber is widely used in tyres, seals, footwear, hoses etc. 

What are the types of rubber?

Depending on the source from which it is obtained, rubber can either natural or synthetic. Natural rubber originates naturally from the sap of a tree, while Synthetic rubber is made from components of crude oil, bonded together through chemical processes to form a synthetic polymer. 

How is Natural Rubber Made?

Natural Rubber or NR comes from extracting the liquid sap called latex, from certain trees – especially Hevea Brasiliensis trees. 

Step 1: Latex is extracted by first making a cut in the bark of the tree, and collecting the runny sap in cups. This process is known as tapping. 

Step 2: In cases where uncoagulated latex is required, ammonia is added to prevent the raw latex from solidifying. 

Step 3: In other cases, the latex is coagulated with formic acid or acetic acid, whereupon the coagulum rises to the surface as a white, doughy material. 

Step 4: It is then milled into thin crepe sheets, to remove the moisture.

Step 5: The sheets of rubber are hung over racks in a smokehouse or left to air dry. 

Step 6: Several days later, it is then folded into bales and is ready for processing. 

Where does Synthetic Rubber come from?

Synthetic rubber is made from the catalyzation of monomers from cracked hydrocarbons. They are polymerized to form long chains. The different forms of synthetic rubbers are produced by the copolymerization of the carbon chain with styrene, butadiene, isoprene, chloroprene etc. 

The various rubber compounds have their desirable characteristics through the addition of fillers, protectants, plasticizers, curatives, and other chemicals in various ratios to produce specific physical and chemical properties.

Rubber Processing:

Natural and Synthetic rubber needs to be processed further with additives to achieve desirable physical and chemical characteristics. 

Chemical substances (additives) are added during the blending process to ensure that the eventual rubber produced has the specific properties required. 

Vulcanisation Process:

The process of adding sulphur to the compound to create cross links between the long polymer chain. 

Adding Pigments & Plasticizers:

Pigments: Solid materials that are added into gum rubber, except for those used as vulcanizing agents, are called pigments. There are 2 types of pigments:

  1. Reinforcing pigment – These improve the properties of the compound
  2. Filler – These act as diluents that can be added into compounds to improve processing capabilities and reduce cost.

Soot and silica are two examples of fillers; these enhance the firmness of the rubber.
Colouring agents: these give the rubber a certain colour.
Preservatives: these protect the eventual rubber product from ageing and ozone.

Plasticizers: these are oily substances which make the rubber end product softer.

What is the difference between X Rings and O Rings

X Rings and O Rings are both types of mechanical seals that are used to prevent leakage of fluids, gases and other media, in various industrial applications. While both, X rings and O rings are used for the purpose of sealing, they are used for specific conditions, each providing key advantages to another. They are both often made up of elastomers like, Nitrile or Buna-N, Silicone, EPDM, FKM or Viton, FFKM and HNBR – to name a few. 

Detailed below are some of the differences between the two, and reasoning for why one should pick a particular type of seal. 

X Ring Seals or Quad Rings:

The X rings get their name because the cross-section of the seal resembles the letter ‘X’. It is also commonly known as Quad Rings. 

  • Sealing Efficiency:

The X ring is a four-lobed design seal that provides multiple sealing surfaces. As a result, in a dynamic application where the seal endures repetitive impact, an X ring or Quad ring may be more beneficial to use because of the multiple sealing surfaces that prevent leakage. 

  • Prevention of Leakage due to Twisting:

Due to their X shaped cross-section, X rings are less likely to twist under dynamic or sliding applications, offering enhanced stability and sealing performance.

  • Reduced Compression Set:

X rings are less prone to compression set due to their X design, which distributes the compressive forces evenly. 

  • Friction:

The unique shape helps maintain lubrication between the seal and the mating surface, which lowers friction and hence reduces wear – extending the seal’s lifespan. 

  • Application:

They are widely used in dynamic applications like reciprocating rods and plungers and rotating or reciprocating shafts, where resistance to friction and wear are critical. 

O Rings:

These seals have the prefix ‘O’ because of their circular or torus cross-section. They are typically made from elastomers but can also be made using specialized compounds for specific applications.

  • Reduced Sealing Performance:

An O ring can be used in static applications or low speed pivoting movements, because its surface creates spiraling or twisting movements, resulting in reduced sealing performance. 

  • Ease in Installation

O rings are easier to install and their simple design makes them preferable for smaller spaces. They are also much easier to manufacture. 

  • Compression Set:

O rings are more prone to compression set or permanent deformation over time.

  • Application:

They are widely used in static or dynamic applications with reduced relative movement, such as rotating pump shafts and hydraulic cylinder pistons.

What are O-rings?

An O ring is a torus shaped ring with a circular cross-section that is used as a mechanical seal or gasket. It can be made using various materials like elastomers, thermoplastics such as PTFE and metal. The primary function of an O-ring is sealing in static and dynamic applications. 

Rubber O rings or Elastomeric O rings are used as an O ring Seal to prevent the loss of fluid or gas. A typical seal assembly consists of a gland that contains and supports the O ring. 

Material Selection Criteria for Rubber O-rings

The choice of your base elastomer or material is made based on two primary factors:

  1. Operating Temperature

During compression, a seal changes from its original state and overtime, with exposure to excessive temperatures, beyond a material’s limit, there will be a loss in the elastic memory of the seal. This will result in leakage and system failure. 

      2. Media that needs to be sealed

All elastomers undergo physical or chemical changes when they come in contact with aggressive media. The limit of permissible volume change – shrinkage or swelling – that an elastomer can tolerate, will determine the material of choice for an O-ring seal.

 

What are the materials used in making Rubber O-rings?

In the following points we will go through the various materials or basic elastomers that are used for Rubber O-ring Seals. Depending on requirements of heat resistance, chemical resistance and other physical influences, the base elastomer and the hardness of the finished product (O-ring Seal) are determined. 

  • Acrylonitrile-Butadiene (NBR)

Nitrile rubber is the general term for acrylonitrile-butadiene copolymer. The physical properties of the copolymer vary greatly based on the content of acrylonitrile in it. NBR is a versatile compound as it has good mechanical properties and high wear resistance. It is resistant to heat up to 100 deg. C. However, it is not recommended for outdoor applications, as it is not resistant to ozone, weather and atmospheric aging. 

  • Styrene Butadiene Rubber (SBR)

Styrene Butadiene Rubber (SBR) O-rings are used in highly abrasive conditions. SBR is known to have good physical properties such as impact strength, good resilience, tensile strength, and excellent abrasion resistance with favorable ageing characteristics. The weaknesses of SBR are that it requires reinforcement and has sub-par low temperature resistance. 

  • Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer (EPDM)

EPDM copolymer is made of Ethylene and Propylene. They are particularly used in outdoor applications and in brake systems that use fluids having glycol base. They have good low temperature resistance and are also resistant to ozone, steam, weather and atmospheric ageing. They are used very often in Automobile Industries. They are not compatible with mineral oil products such as oils, greases and fuels.

  • Chloroprene Rubber (CR)

Chloroprene rubber was the first synthetic rubber that was developed commercially. It exhibits good ozone, ageing and chemical resistance. It has good mechanical properties over a wide temperature range from -40 deg C to 121 deg C. It also shows good resistance to high aniline point oils. 

  • Silicone Rubber 

Silicone is a polymer of silicon, carbon, hydrogen and oxygen. It is generally stable and non-reactive, and can maintain its properties across a wide temperature range. This material is used when the retention of the initial shape of the product is required. 

  • Fluoroelastomer (FKM)

Fluoroelastomers have excellent resistance to mineral oils, greases, certain aliphatic and aromatic hydrocarbons, ozone, weather and aging. They are also resistant to certain solvents, chemicals and high temperatures. Due to their resistance to petroleum based greases and oils, they are widely used in Oil & Gas, Chemical, Automotive and Aerospace applications. FKM Compounds come under the category of High Performance Elastomers. 

  • Fluorosilicone (FVMQ / FSL)

Fluorosilicone rubber is a type of silicone rubber with the fluorine group attached to the main polymer chain. As a result, FVMQ seals are more stable with resistance to a wide range of oils, acids, fuels and non-polar solvents. FVMQ also has good compression set resistance and maintains excellent tensile strength. 

  • Hydrogenated Nitrile (HNBR)

This is created by the Hydrogenation of NBR. HNBR has superior mechanical characteristics such as high strength, higher heat resistance and wear behavior in dynamic applications. It also helps to reduce extrusion.

  • Perfluoroelastomer (FFKM)

FFKM is a champion polymer in sealing applications. It has the widest operating temperature range than any other compound due to the presence of more fluorine than even FKM elastomers. It is also resistant to a wide variety of chemicals and solvents such as hot amines, sour gases and hydrocarbons. 

  • Tetrafluoroethylene Propylene (FEPM)

Tetrafluoroethylene Propylene (FEPM) is a high performance elastomer composed of tetrafluoroethylene and propylene. It is compatible with a wide variety of chemicals such as bases, amines, water, engine oils, ozone and alcohols. But it is important to note that it is not compatible with chlorinated and aromatic hydrocarbons and even acetone. 

What are the applications or uses of Rubber O-rings?

  • Aerospace:

Sealing Systems: Used in aircraft engines, fuel systems, and hydraulic systems to ensure reliable sealing under extreme temperatures and pressures.

  • Automotive:

Engine Components: Provide reliable seals in fuel injectors, coolant systems, and turbochargers.

Transmission Systems: Used in automatic and manual transmissions to prevent fluid leaks and ensure smooth operation.

  • Oil and Gas:

Used in valves, pumps, and flanges to prevent leaks and maintain system integrity under high temperatures and aggressive chemicals.

  • Chemical Processing:

Pumps and Valves: Provide chemical resistance and prevent leaks in pumps and valves handling aggressive chemicals.

  • Pharmaceutical and Food Industries:

Sterile Environments: Used in equipment that requires strict hygiene standards, such as mixers, pumps, and filling machines.

  • Semiconductor Manufacturing:

Vacuum Systems: Essential for maintaining vacuum integrity in semiconductor manufacturing processes.

Chemical Resistance: Provide reliable sealing in the presence of aggressive chemicals used in semiconductor fabrication.

What are the properties of Rubber O-rings?

Rubber O-rings are versatile sealing components with a range of properties that make them suitable for various applications. Here are some of the key properties of rubber O-rings:

  • Elasticity and Resilience:

Elasticity: Rubber O-rings can return to their original shape after deformation, allowing them to create an effective seal by filling gaps.

Resilience: They can withstand repeated cycles of compression and decompression without significant loss of performance.

  • Compression Set Resistance: 

Rubber O Rings have a lower compression set enabling good sealing performance. This means that the level of deformation is less under a compressive load. 

  1. Chemical Resistance:

Different rubber materials offer varying levels of resistance to oils, solvents, chemicals, gases. 

Nitrile (Buna-N): Good resistance to oils, fuels, and other petroleum-based fluids.

Viton (FKM): Excellent resistance to high temperatures, chemicals, and oils.

EPDM: Good resistance to water, steam, and weathering, but poor resistance to oils and fuels.

  1. Temperature Range:

Rubber O rings can operate in a wide variety of temperatures, depending on the material:

Silicone O Rings & FVMQ O Rings can operate at temperatures as low as -70° C

FFKM O Rings can operate at temperatures as high as +315° C

  1. Hardness:

Hardness is measured on the Shore-A scale, typically ranging from 35 to 95. The appropriate hardness depends on the application, with softer O-rings providing better sealing on uneven surfaces and harder O-rings offering better resistance to extrusion.

  1. Tear and Abrasion Resistance:

Rubber O rings have varying degrees of resistance to tearing and abrasion. Materials like Polyurethane have excellent resistance to abrasion, while others like Silicone are more prone to tearing.

Permeability:

Permeability refers to a material’s ability to resist gas or liquid to pass through it. The extent of Permeability of Rubber O rings can vary depending on the type of the elastomeric material. 

Fluorocarbon (FKM) offers very good permeability to gases, and is also highly resistant to a wide variety of harsh chemicals. As a result, it’s the ideal choice in Chemical Processing Industries.

Electrical Insulation:

Rubber O-rings are generally good electrical insulators, which can be beneficial in certain applications.

Ageing and Weather Resistance:

This refers to the ability of O Rings to resist ageing due to exposure to Ozone, UV Light, and environmental conditions:

EPDM: Excellent resistance to Ozone, UV Light and Weathering.

Silicone: It also offers excellent resistance to Ozone and Weathering.

  1. FDA Compliance:

Special rubber compounds and Some specific elastomeric grades in Silicone, EPDM can be formulated to be compliant with US FDA regulations for use in food, beverage and pharmaceutical applications.

Cost Effectiveness:

Elastomeric O-rings are generally cost-effective, offering a high performance-to-cost ratio. They are easy to manufacture and replace, making them a practical choice for many sealing applications.

 

What are Engineering Plastics?

What are Engineering Plastics?

Engineering Plastics are high performance synthetic materials with high durability and heat resistance. These engineering plastics are used in industrial components that require superior functionality. The high performance plastics are specifically designed to have better characteristics than general purpose or commodity plastics. These properties may include better mechanical, electrical, and thermal properties; improved chemical and ultraviolet light resistance; and biocompatibility for food packaging applications.

In this article, we will go through the difference between commodity plastics and engineering plastics, the properties of engineering plastics, its uses and applications etc. 

What is the difference between Commodity Plastics and Engineering Plastics? 

Commodity plastics or General Purpose Plastics are used in high volume applications where technical requirements are not stringent. These commodity plastics are relatively inexpensive to produce and possess weaker mechanical properties. 

Some examples of Commodity Plastics include:

  • Polypropylene (PP)
  • Polyethylene (PE)
  • Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC)
  • Polystyrene (PS) etc. 

The technologically advanced engineering plastics possess greater mechanical and thermal properties. They have the capability to replace traditional engineering materials such as ceramics and metals in specific cases because of their higher performance and enhanced durability. 

What are the different types of Engineering Plastics?

There are various types of engineering plastics. These may include:

  • Poly tetra fluoro ethylene (PTFE).
  • Reinforced Poly tetra fluoro ethylene (RPTFE).
  • Poly chloro trifluoro ethylene (PCTFE).
  • Poly ether ether ketone (PEEK).
  • Reinforced Poly ether ether ketone (RPEEK).
  • PolyImide (PI).
  • PolyOxyMethylene (POM).

What are the Properties of Engineering Plastics?

1.Abrasion Resistance

Abrasion resistance is the ability of a material to resist the loss of volume from its surface due to rubbing, sliding or scraping. Engineering plastics have a low coefficient of friction compared to metals in the same or similar applications. They also possess self-lubrication properties, making them ideal for extended wear and use in load-bearing applications.

2.Chemical Resistance

Chemical resistance describes the ability of a material to withstand a chemical attack for a specific period without significant deterioration of its performance properties. Some types of engineering plastics possess the ability to resist corrosive chemicals without the loss in their form and structure. 

3.Dimensional stability

Dimensional stability is a measure of a material’s ability to retain its fit, form, and functional properties throughout its lifecycle. Engineering Plastic parts are used in demanding applications and are subject to high levels of mechanical stress. These plastic parts also possess the advantage of being lighter in weight compared to metals. For additional dimensional stability, the thermoplastic can be reinforced with glass fibers or other fillers. 

4.Electrical properties

Electrical properties are related to a material’s ability to conduct or insulate electrical currents. Electrical conductivity and resistivity are the two critical electrical properties of engineering plastics. Most engineering plastics are poor electrical conductors which makes them ideal for applications where electrical insulation is desired, such as in various electronic and wiring applications.

5.Thermal Resistance

Thermal resistance refers to a material’s ability to resist changes in its form and structure under varying temperatures. Different engineering plastics possess different levels of thermal resistance, hence it is important to choose the right grade for a particular application. Engineering Plastic like PEEK can be used in high-temperature applications up to 250 deg. C, and PTFE can be used in low-temperature applications as low as -150 deg. C 

6.Flammability

Flammability can be defined as a material’s ability to catch fire. Depending on the type of engineering plastic, the material’s extent of flammability may vary. For eg. materials such as PEEK or PPS are specifically formulated to provide flame resistance and prevent ignition. Polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) is a non-flammable engineering plastic. It is a strong, waxy and tough resin produced by the polymerization of tetrafluoroethylene. This engineering plastic is used in high temperature applications, and is stable in conditions up to 500 deg. F

7.Food compatibility

Food compatibility refers to a material’s safety for use when it comes in contact with food. Since engineering plastics are heat resistant, chemical resistant and wear & tear resistant, the material’s form and chemical structure does not change when it comes in contact with food at different temperatures. Of all the engineering plastics, PTFE and PEEK are the most compatible in food and beverage applications. 

8.Impact strength

Impact strength is the ability of a material to absorb energy during plastic deformation. The toughness of plastics is measured by their resistance to impact. Nylon and PEEK have the best impact strength.

9.UV Resistance

Amongst all the Engineering Plastics, PTFE is known to have the best UV Resistance because of the strong carbon-fluorine bonds found in the material. 

What are the Uses and Applications of Engineering Plastics?

ISMAT’s Novum Series of Engineering Plastics are primarily used in industries, as seals and gaskets. They are used across various industries like:

  • Food & Beverage
  • Automotive 
  • Oil & Gas
  • Aerospace
  • Chemical 
  • Medical & Pharmaceutical
  • Drinking Water or Potable Water Applications

Engineering plastics can be used to manufacture the following components:

  • Valve Seats
  • Stem Seals
  • Valve sleeves
  • Envelope gaskets
  • Chevron packings
  • O-rings
  • Guide rings
  • Spring energized seals
  • Washers
  • Gaskets
  • Wear rings
  • Piston seals
  • Custom designed parts

What is the Process of Manufacturing Engineering Plastic Components?

At ISMAT, manufacturing of the engineering plastic components is done under the following steps:

  • Cold compression moulding

Compression moulding is the process of manufacturing complex composite components with the application of pressure under varying temperatures – depending on the composite. Cold compression moulding is a curing process for thermoplastics, where the curing takes place at room temperature. 

  • Sintering

Once the moulding process is completed, the components are then taken for Sintering. 

Sintering is a heat treatment process where a material is converted to a solid mass with the application of heat, below the material’s melting point.

  • Machining 

Once the component has been cured, it is machined according to the specific dimensions.

  • Deflashing

Deflashing involves the removal of excess plastic material from its body surface. Deburring is a type of deflashing technique that removes sharp edges or burrs from plastic materials, leaving the material with smooth edges and fine finished surface.

  • Quality Inspection

Quality Inspection is the process of evaluating and verifying if the inspected materials and products conform with the specified requirements. Quality inspectors are a critical part of ensuring that products are of high quality and produced in compliance with the client’s standards.

Summary

Engineering Plastics possess greater physical and chemical properties in comparison to other commodity plastics and metals. These materials can be used in various industrial applications due to factors such as: superior abrasion resistance, thermal resistance and chemical resistance. Engineering plastics may be used in the manufacture of Seals, Valve seats, Gaskets, Washers and other custom molded components. Get in touch with us to learn more about engineering plastics. Follow us on LinkedIn for more such articles. 

What is FFKM and why is it a champion in industrial sealing applications?

Industrial Sealing Solutions need to be precisely engineered, because they are often used in environments with aggressive chemicals and extreme temperatures. One elastomer that stands as a champion for such environments is Vertex F or Perfluoroelastomer (FFKM) 

FFKM, often known as the “Rubber Teflon,”  is a unique elastomeric polymer that thrives in the most challenging environments, due to its fully fluorinated backbone derived from poly(tetrafluoroethylene) or PTFE. Vertex F (FFKM) contains higher amounts of fluorine than standard FKM, resulting in higher temperature ratings (up to approximately 325°C/617°F). There are also some FFKM grades that have excellent resistance to low temperatures up to -40 deg C as well.

ISMAT offers a comprehensive range of VERTEX F perfluoroelastomer compounds. These compounds are available in various forms such as molded and vulcanized O-Rings, X-Rings, Lipseals, and custom parts, that are used in industries across: Oil & Gas, Aerospace, Automobile etc. 

Let’s dive deeper into why exactly Vertex F or FFKM is better than other compounds?

Features and Benefits of VERTEX F / FFKM:

Chemical and Temperature Resistance:

Withstanding the most aggressive chemicals and extreme temperatures, VERTEX F series materials excel where others falter, ensuring reliability in the harshest conditions.

Long Service Life:

Reduced downtime and maintenance requirements translate to lower total cost of ownership, making VERTEX F series materials a cost-effective choice in the long run.

Low Compression Set:

Enhanced sealing force and reduced leakage over extended periods result from low compression set, ensuring consistent performance over time.

High Purity:

Controlled environment room production ensures high purity and precision in every component, meeting the most stringent quality standards.

Precision Manufacturing:

Flashless, wasteless tool design concepts ensure high precision and quality with short lead time. 

ISMAT strives to provide these industrial sealing solutions to their customers through:

Engineering Expertise:

ISMAT’s team of engineering experts collaborates closely with clients to tailor solutions for their specific applications. From conceptualization to production, ISMAT ensures every aspect is optimized for performance and reliability.

Decades of Experience:

With decades of experience in solving complex challenges, ISMAT brings a wealth of knowledge to the table. Combined with cutting-edge manufacturing and tooling technologies, ISMAT is the go-to partner for enhancing application performance and reducing total cost of ownership.

Versatile Manufacturing:

From high-specification O-Rings to intricate custom components, ISMAT’s manufacturing capabilities cover a broad spectrum. Whether it’s micro-scale seals or large-diameter solutions, ISMAT delivers precision without compromise.

In conclusion, the VERTEX F series by ISMAT represents the pinnacle of FFKM innovation, offering unmatched reliability, longevity, and performance in the most demanding environments. With ISMAT as your development partner, rest assured that your sealing challenges will be met with precision, expertise, and unwavering commitment to excellence.

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