We rely on rubber every day, from the hoses, belts, and tires that keep our vehicles running smoothly to rubber bands and erasers in our desks and even the soles of our shoes. Creating functional and durable versions of these and many other products require a vulcanization process which firms and cures rubber to improve its functionality for these uses. Modern vulcanization is typically performed with an industrial vulcanization autoclave.
How Vulcanized Rubber Is Made
Both natural and synthetic rubbers are vulnerable to temperature changes, becoming sticky when heated and brittle when chilled. To make it a more durable and useful material, it must be cured or vulcanized. The rubber vulcanizing process modifies rubber’s internal chemical bonds (changing its cross-linking chemistry) with the addition of sulfur or other chemicals and heat to create a harder, stronger, firmer, more elastic, and resilient material.
How to Vulcanize Rubber
Vulcanization is a relatively simple process of changing rubber’s natural structure, shaping the resulting material, and heat-curing it. Specific steps are:
Rubber is submerged in a tank filled with sulfur and special additives which speeds up the curing process. Other additives may also be included with the rubber to enhance performance, appearance, or other characteristics.
Rubber is now extruded, molded, or otherwise formed into the desired shape.
After shaping, rubber parts or products are typically placed in a heated vulcanizing autoclave chamber where the elevated temperature (usually 300°F to 400°F) accelerates the process.
Finally, vulcanized products are removed and allowed to cool.
Uses and Benefits
Vulcanized rubber, whether from natural or synthetic sources, is a popular, cost-effective material for applications where its strength, durability, elasticity, and versatile nature are imperative.
Benefits of Vulcanized Rubber
Some of vulcanized rubber’s most valuable benefits include:
Resilience: Tires, stoppers, shoe soles, and hoses, among other things, must be able to withstand a tremendous amount of wear and tear.
Elasticity: Rubber products are particularly useful for their elasticity, or the ability to return to their original shape repeatedly.
Moisture Resistance: Rubber’s waterproof qualities are a key benefit for applications that are exposed to moisture for extended periods.
Insulation: Rubber’s very low dielectric constant and other characteristics make it an excellent insulator for both electrical currents and temperature.
Physical Resistance: Rubber performs well even with substantial physical damage such as impacts and abrasions.
Chemical Resistance: Rubber has good resistance to oxidation, corrosives, organic solvents, and other chemicals.
Some of the products that most frequently use vulcanized rubber include:
Hoses and tubing
Balls and other toys
Erasers and rubber bands
Gaskets and seals
Conveyor and other belts
Shock absorbers and vibration dampeners
Durable tank linings
Insulating sheets and related products
Rubber Vulcanizing Autoclaves at Bondtech
Our vulcanizing autoclaves are designed with options that offer the precision and flexibility required to meet the versatile needs of our customers. Options and features include:
Heating Systems Options
Autoclave heating options include:
Indirect electric heat
Indirect steam heat
Direct steam heat
Quick openings doors are designed for safety with:
Hydraulic power for swift, safe opening and locking
Durable O-ring gasket with a locking ring rotation to reduce wear
Temperature & Pressure Controls
A prepackaged temperature and pressure control unit is included with each rubber vulcanizer with a 24-hour circular chart recorder.
Programmable Logic Controller (PLC)
Programmable logic controllers allow for flexible programming of autoclave process cycles, allowing users to:
Optimize autoclave cycles as needed
Produce high-quality products
Connect a modem if desired
Quality Control & Safety Features
Our autoclaves stand out for their safety and quality with:
ASME and National Board certification
Safety interlocks and relief valves
Online tech support available from our engineers
Vulcanized rubber is a versatile material with applications across countless industries. At Bondtech, our vulcanizing autoclaves are an ideal solution for safe, customizable rubber vulcanizing.Contact us today to learn more, orrequest a quote for your autoclave rubber needs.
BONDTECH CORPORATION cares for the safety and preparedness of U.S. hospitals. We recommend all hospitals to prepare “financially and operationally” to contend with a potentially deadly outbreak of the Wuhan coronavirus that is already killing people and sickened hundreds more in China and is spreading to Europe, North America, and several Asian countries.
Just like any pandemic, the need for an on-site autoclave in every hospital is indisputable. We would like to offer a small, affordable autoclave to properly treat and inactivate all resistant viruses, bacteria, fungi eliminating the chances to further spread of any type of infection.
BTT FULL SERVICE CAPABILITIES
• Design, Installation, and Commissioning
• After Install Service – Response time immediate
provides over80%treatment capacity in North America • Proven/Reliable high vacuum/high pressure technology – since 1986. • Bondtech has delivered well over 1,500 autoclaves worldwide. • Manufacturing Plant – 100,000Ft2 – Salisbury, North Carolina.
THE CENTER FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION
has announced that the 2019 Novel Coronavirus is in the United States. The first patient was found in Washington State after returning from Wuhan China. Let’s not be passive and let’s be prepared. Bontech is the leader in the manufacturing of autoclaves that deal with medical waste treatment and sterilization worldwide. During the Ebola crisis in 2014 to 2016 Bondtech’s autoclaves were certified to be used to treat the medical waste from infected patients. Please call us if you have any questions.
Bondtech is ready to work with you regarding your hospital needs. We also have an extensive line of Sharp containers. Don’t hesitate toCONTACT US
Industrial autoclaves facilitate high temperatures and pressures for various processes across many industries. These devices are frequently used for sterilizing infectious waste but may also be used to cure and strengthen composite parts that must withstand harsh environments and/or heavy use. Industrial autoclaves may also laminate glass, vulcanize rubber, treat wood and be used in processes for ceramic core leaching. Depending on the specific machine and application, autoclaves use either steam or electric heat.
Bondtech has been installing, repairing, and manufacturing industrial autoclaves for more than three decades. This page will help readers understand industrial autoclaves and how they work.
How Autoclaves Work
Autoclaves use high pressures and temperatures to properly cure or sterilize products. Their internal chambers are designed to be cylindrical in shape, as this type of design facilitates a more stable high-pressure environment.
Direct-Steam heated autoclaves generally work by exposing the product to heat that is approximately 270° F (132° C). As the autoclave fills with steam the air is removed from the main chamber to create a vacuum seal. This process is typically completed using a vacuum pump or by forcing the air out through the use of steam. Autoclaves can be heated in several different ways:
Wet steam is created using a boiler, while dry steam is generated with the use of a heat exchanger. Some autoclaves rely on electric heat rather than steam heat. In these cases, the autoclave is heated using electric coils.
As with pressure cookers, autoclaves have locking doors to prevent injury from the increased pressure and heat inside. Despite this safety feature, it’s important that only designated individuals be allowed to make alterations to the machine’s settings. Other best practices include the following:
Before loading an autoclave, it is critical to ensure that there is nothing left behind inside the chambers from a previous use.
Items going into the autoclave should always be placed into a secondary container. Waste materials should be contained within autoclavable bags.
The autoclave chamber should not be overfilled. Make sure nothing is touching the internal walls of the autoclave to ensure that the steam or heat can fully reach everything inside. This also helps prevent plastic from melting due to direct contact with the extreme heat of the chamber walls.
Aside from sterilization applications, autoclaves are often utilized in industries such as aviation and aerospace. In these cases, autoclaves are designed to cure composite parts used in aircraft and other applications. The composite parts are, at times, placed into vacuum sealed bags and then pressurized within the autoclave, creating a part that is strong and durable.
Autoclave Frequently Asked Questions
At Bondtech Corporation, we have been manufacturing reliable, high quality autoclaves for over 30 years. Here are some frequently asked questions:
What sizes do you provide?
We provide all standard sizes. We manufacture our autoclaves at our own facilities, so we are also able to provide custom sizes to suit the needs of unique or demanding applications.
How long does an autoclave take to sterilize equipment and supplies?
Sterilization times vary depending on the equipment in question and the needs of your particular project. For medical waste, the entire sterilization process takes about one hour from beginning to end, with about 15 minutes dedicated to setup and removal, and 45 minutes of actual sterilization.
Where is your manufacturing facility located?
Our headquarters are located in Somerset, Kentucky. We operate manufacturing facilities located in Charlotte, North Carolina, and Salisbury, North Carolina.
What items or materials should not be autoclaved?
While autoclaves are convenient and necessary for a number of industries, there are certain materials that should never be autoclaved. These include:
Reactive or toxic materials such as radioactive waste or chemotherapy waste
Toxic and flammable items such as polystyrene, polyethylene, and polyurethane
Explosive materials such as liquids in sealed containers, which may explode under the pressure of the autoclave
Corrosive materials such as bleach or hypochlorite
How much do autoclaves cost?
The production process for autoclaves is highly customizable, so costs may vary wildly depending on your specific project needs. Please request a quote for a quick and accurate estimate for your use case.
Can you work on other model autoclaves?
Yes, we work with autoclaves from any global manufacturer. Our services include, but not limited to, refurbishing of these systems as well as maintenance and repairs as needed.
Autoclaves from Bondtech
For over 30 years, we have been dedicated to producing customized machinery to perfectly fit the needs of our customers. We also repair and refurbish any brand of equipment, using state-of-the-art technology to bring it up to date and make it perform like new. We always consider the unique needs of each customer, including project and budgetary requirements. Additionally, we are committed to providing environment quality products that are safe, reliable, and durable.
If you’d like to learn more about autoclave sterilization or you want to find out more about Bondtech Autoclave Systems and how we can assist you, please submit a service request or request a quote today.