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Material Silicone Rubber

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Silicone Rubber

Silicone (VMQ) is generally non-reactive, stable and resistant to extreme environments and temperatures.

Typical applications       

  • Cookware
  • Medical applications
  • Mobile phone/keypad cases

Frequently Asked Questions

Silicone rubber VMQ (Vinyl Methyl Silicone) is a type of synthetic rubber known for its distinctive combination of properties. It is primarily made from silicon, oxygen, and methyl groups, with vinyl groups added to improve its resistance to heat. VMQ stands out for its excellent temperature stability, maintaining its flexibility and resilience over a wide range of temperatures, typically from -55°C to +200°C, and even higher for specially formulated compounds.

One of the key features of silicone rubber is its remarkable resistance to weathering, ozone, and UV exposure, which makes it ideal for outdoor applications. Additionally, VMQ is highly resistant to compression set (permanent deformation when a given force is applied for a definite period), water, and many chemicals. It is also physiologically inert, making it suitable for food-grade applications and medical devices where non-toxicity is essential.

At Keaflex, we often recommend Silicone VMQ for rubber moulding due to its well-rounded performance and cost-effectiveness. VMQ stands out for its excellent temperature stability, making it adaptable to various environmental conditions. This feature is particularly valuable in settings where consistent performance across temperature extremes is critical. While Silicone PMQ (Phenyl Methyl Silicone) offers superior performance at lower temperatures and is ideal for applications in colder climates, it tends to be more expensive due to its specialized nature. On the other hand, FVMQ (Fluorovinyl Methyl Silicone) provides exceptional chemical resistance, especially against fuels and oils, which is essential in automotive and industrial applications. However, the higher cost and specialized properties of FVMQ may not be necessary for less demanding environments. Meanwhile, MQ (Methyl Silicone), which lacks the vinyl enhancements found in VMQ, does not offer the same level of heat resistance, making VMQ the more suitable option for high-temperature applications. Overall, VMQ’s balance of thermal stability, chemical resistance, and cost efficiency makes it a preferred choice for both industrial and consumer applications. For more information on which material is most suitable for your specific project, please contact us directly.

Yes, silicone rubber VMQ (Vinyl Methyl Silicone) can be used for food-grade applications. VMQ is highly favoured in the food industry due to its excellent thermal stability, chemical inertness, and non-toxic nature. It does not react with most food products or beverages, nor does it impart any odour or taste, which is crucial for maintaining the quality and safety of food items.
Additionally, silicone rubber VMQ is resistant to microbial growth, which is essential for applications where hygiene and cleanliness are paramount, such as in food processing, kitchenware, and medical devices. VMQ’s ability to withstand repeated sterilization cycles and its compatibility with extreme temperature variations—from freezing to baking—makes it particularly useful for food-grade moulds, seals, and gaskets.

Silicone rubber VMQ is highly valued in rubber moulding for its excellent temperature resistance and flexibility, but it does have some limitations. Primarily, VMQ is more costly compared to rubbers like natural rubber or SBR (Styrene Butadiene Rubber), which may be a concern in budget-sensitive or high-volume projects. Additionally, while VMQ’s tear strength is sufficient for many uses, it is lower than some elastomers. This can be a disadvantage in scenarios where the material may face high mechanical stress or contact with sharp objects. Under continuous pressure or heavy loads, VMQ can compress and deform over time, limiting its effectiveness in high load-bearing applications.

These limitations highlight the importance of carefully assessing the specific needs of your project to determine if VMQ’s benefits outweigh the potential drawbacks. For more information about the suitability of materials for your specific project, please contact us directly at [email protected]

Silicone VMQ is highly values across various industries due to its excellent temperature resistance and mechanical durability, making it essential for automotive and aerospace components like gaskets, seals, and hoses that face extreme conditions. Its reliability under such conditions boosts safety and efficiency, and its non-toxic, flexible nature makes it suitable for consumer products such as kitchenware and baby items, prioritising safety and hygiene. In the medical field, VMQ’s biocompatibility is crucial for surgical tools and tubing where resistance to repeated sterilization is essential. VMQ’s excellent electrical insulation and thermal stability are vital in electronics for protecting sensitive components. Additionally, VMQ is utilised in industrial settings for its chemical inertness and thermal resistance, ideal for applications involving mechanical seals and hoses that encounter hot or corrosive fluids.

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