Fiberglass composite resins, unsaturated polyesters and vinyl esters can be cured using ultraviolet (UV) light. This dramatically reduces the curing time from hours to minutes. In addition, photo-curing provides a more consistent and controlled process compared to the existing catalyst process which can vary depending on the humidity and temperature. Heraeus Noblelight America also has a "cocooning" process which can greatly reduce VOC emissions.
Fast photo-curing is especially advantageous in high production open molding, pultrusion and filament winding processes for many different products, such as:
- Skylight panels
- Shower and tub enclosures
- RV and truck panels
Manufacturers of these and other products should evaluate photo-curing as a way to increase production and lower styrene emissions.
If you use thermoset resins with fiberglass reinforcements and little pigmentation, you are an ideal candidate. In some cases we are able to devise processes for curing pigmented gel coats and resins with fillers, so contact us to explore the possibilities. (Thermoplastic resins do not undergo cross-linking polymerization and thus cannot be UV-cured.)
Click here to see which of our products are most highly suited to composites applications.
Click below for more information on UV curing for various composites applications:
The following documents are also available for download:
Contact us if you would like more information or have specific questions.