The structural adhesives are those used for a permanent bond can converse integrity structural of the product. Its importance is that a failure in this union could compromise the structure of the piece and its function which is why it is necessary to use adhesive test machines to test the integrity of the product.
Nowadays, the advancement of the technology in the adhesive is increasingly important and represents important advantages for the manufacturers since it allows him to avoid more traditional and less practical methods of the mechanical union such as welding, riveting or other joints. It is expected that Structural Adhesives Market size will likely cross USD 7 billion by 2024 with gains at over 4% between 2016 and 2024.
What are the advantages of using structural adhesives?
First, adhesives often involve lower material costs than mechanical fasteners. In addition, it is a much simpler process. A manufacturer can store dozens of different shapes and sizes of rivets, screws, bolts and washers that can be removed by a single adhesive. On the other hand, the work involved in applying adhesives may be less than other fixing methods. In the case of metal welding, multiple steps are necessary that can be avoided when applying adhesives.
The work involved in welding can be significantly reduced with adhesives since its handling time can only be a few minutes. Other methods of mechanical fixation involve multiple points of attachment and more steps to follow, unlike adhesives.
A rule of thumb with adhesives is the longer the cure time, the stronger the final bond. However, although adhesives may require time to reach their maximum strength, many adhesives can reach fixation or handling points in a matter of minutes. In this way, although more time is needed for curing to complete, no human interaction or anchors are needed for this.
The metallic components of the mechanical joints are heavy compared to the light polymers of the adhesives and they can add significant weight when multiple fasteners are needed. This is one of the reasons why the aerospace industry has turned to adhesives a solution for lightweight structures.
In addition to being lighter, adhesives spread the tension of a joint across the entire surface of the area, while mechanical fasteners emphasize the tension at the bonding points. This stress concentration creates unnecessary performance requirements for substrates that often make the entire component thicker or additional material must be used to withstand the stress at each point that ends up adding more weight.
More agile process
Consider what happens when a mechanical fastener is used, such as a threaded assembly to join two substrates. Often, the first step in the process is to drill a hole in both substrates through which the screw will pass. Not only does this create additional contamination pathways that can compromise the inside of your product, but the act of creating a hole in your product is actually damaging the structural integrity.