Uses & Benefits
Epoxy resins are used in a variety of industries due to their resistance to thermal stress and water, which makes them particularly effective at preventing product degradation over time. They are known for their strong adhesive qualities and can be used with various materials including glass, stone, metal, wood, fabric, and more. They also serve as a key element in fire retardant coatings used in commercial and industrial facilities.
Epoxy resins are ideal contributors for a variety of applications because of their strength, durability, light weight properties, and long-standing safety track record.
Epoxy resins are used both in composites and coatings in the production, transformation, and distribution of various types of renewable and non-renewable energy.
The renewable wind energy sector is one key area in which epoxy resins are highly valued. Materials created with epoxy resins are an indispensable component in offshore wind energy farms due to their durability and low brittleness, light weight, and high mechanical strength. Epoxies are used to coat the steel bodies of wind turbine poles, produce their blades, and protect the structures of hydroelectric power stations from salt water corrosion. Epoxies improve the strength-to-weight ratio of the turbines’ structure, enabling the manufacture of longer, more efficient blades that would be difficult to produce otherwise.
Epoxy resins play a key role in transporting energy across vast distances. From its source origination to the final end user, epoxy’s unique properties help create transmission cables that are significantly lighter in weight, which can increase the electricity capacity by up to 30% compared to the same weight of steel core cable. Epoxy resins also help energy transportation by making the cables and components more durable and reliable.
Building & Construction
Within the construction industry, epoxies are used to strengthen and fortify structural parts, engineering adhesives, and paints. Their presence helps to improve durability, provide longer lifespans, and lessen the need for repainting and refurbishing, ultimately providing economic advantages. Epoxies are more heat- and chemical-resistant than most glues and can adhere to wood, metal, glass, stone, and some plastics. The primary areas for application of epoxy resins in construction projects are coatings, flooring, concrete restoration, crack repair, and as joint material for tiles.
Epoxies play a particularly important role in flooring applications, most prominently in environments such as medical and food-processing facilities that require sterile surfaces. Epoxies are so effective in these environments because their durable nature allows coated floors to be sanitized by stronger cleaning products.
Paintings & Coatings
Water-based epoxy paints dry quickly, providing a tough, protective coating. They can also be cleaned using regular water, and this, plus their low volatility, makes them useful for factory cast iron, cast steel, and cast aluminum applications.
Epoxies are used as protective and insulating coatings and primers to build ships, aircrafts, spacecraft, and satellite systems. Due to their strength, epoxy coatings serve to strengthen and fortify the steel bodies of wind turbine poles, their blades, and the overall structures of hydroelectric power stations. Other relevant applications include pipes used for drinking water, waste, oil, and gas. They also play a vital role in the building and construction industries as outlined in the Building & Construction section.
Epoxies are used in household appliances as functional powder coatings, increasing resistance to corrosion and wear-and-tear. The most common products that are powder-coated are refrigerators, washing machines, and dryers. The coatings protect the appliances by supporting the metal casing to withstand mechanical abrasion and damage from impacts.
Automotive & Transportation
Epoxy resins are used in vehicle production to provide adhesion to metal and resistance to rust and corrosion on the body and essential metal parts of vehicles. A thin, anti-corrosive, epoxy-based coating is applied as a primer, which is then cured and covered with a topcoat that protects the primer from UV light. Only a light application of epoxy resins is needed, which reduces the overall weight of the vehicle, resulting in lower gas usage and fewer emissions.
The rail and marine sectors also benefit from the use of epoxy resins and their ability to replace steel in key machine components, thus reducing the craft’s overall weight. They also reduce corrosion and other degrading elements, adding life to trains and boats.
Epoxy resins are used in aircrafts and satellite systems as a binder for reinforcements such as glass and carbon. This results in fiber materials that are strong and lightweight, which contributes to decreasing emissions and improving strength, durability, and performance. The epoxy resins can also be made to resist the extreme temperatures experienced by aircrafts.
Epoxy resins have been used in food packaging since the 1950s to coat cans, leading to longer shelf life for canned goods.
Epoxy resins are used to help make sports equipment such as tennis rackets, skis, golf equipment, fishing rods, kayaks, and bicycles lighter, stronger, and more durable.