For the last 17 years, I have headed-up the Baltimore’s Zeolite Powder Team. In that time, our team has helped thousands of polymer manufacturers. The majority of questions that we receive are quite similar …so, with that in mind, please find below a series of Frequently Asked Questions that might help you.
Of course, if your topic-of-interest is not in the list below, then please just contact me directly (by clicking here), and I will be very happy to help you, with the question that you have…
Q1: How much Zeolite Powder should I use ?
Answer: Different PU formulations require different quantities of powder. However, as a general rule, the better your raw materials the less SUPERSIV® Powder you need. A good Systems House will typically use 1.0-2.5% SUPERSIV® Powder (by weight). However, if your raw materials are not supplied to a specific water content, of if they are not checked for water content when they arrive, or if they are stored poorly (where they are not 100% sealed against water), then your system might need 2-5% of SUPERSIV® Powder.
Q2: If I currently use 3% (wt) of another brand of zeolite powder, should I just use 3% SUPERSIV in my formula ?
Answer: This 3% addition rate can be tested, but we recommend that you also test other addition rates, because you may be able to use much less SUPERSIV® Powder compared to your current brand of powder. For example, compared to one well known brand of powder, you can actually use 10-15% less SUPERSIV® Powder !
Q3: How should I do the Laboratory Test?
Answer: We suggest that you make one single master-batch of PU formula, and that you then split this into several beakers. Into the first beaker we suggest that you add 0.5% SUPERSIV® Powder, and 1.0% to the next beaker, and 1.5% to the next beaker etc …until you reach 3.5%. Therefore you will need 7 beakers in total.
We also recommend that you test pairs of samples at the same time, then take the mean (average) value of the two beakers for every % addition rate. This will give you a nice smooth line on your graph, when you are plotting the ‘% of SUPERSIV® used’ versus ‘Pot-life’ or ‘Hardness’ etc. This means that you will now have 14 beakers in total.
We strongly suggest that you perform any comparative tests (with other brands of powder) in parallel with the SUPERSIV® Powder at the exact same time, and with the same master-batch of formula. This is to avoid inaccurate results caused by variations in humidity within the laboratory, and variations caused by different water contents of various different raw materials batches.
Q4: How should I handle the powder?
Answer: SUPERSIV® Powder is a very high quality product, and therefore it is very active. This means that in humid conditions, the powder will absorb water and will go out-of-specification within 10 minutes of opening. Because of this, make sure that you have all of your master-batch and all of your beakers prepared beforehand. When this material is fully prepared, add the SUPERSIV® Powder to all of the beakers at the same time.
Q5: Will the SUPERSIV® affect the gel time/pot-life of my formula ?
Answer: With some PU formulations, it is possible that the SUPERSIV® Powder might cause the gel-time to shorten. If you notice this affect on your formula, then simply reduce the amount of catalyst that you put into your formula, and the problem will be solved.
Q6: Why do I see problems with ‘sediment’ at the bottom of my PU formula?
Answer: If you see sediment or a “false precipitate” at the bottom of your mixing vessel when you use SUPERSIV® then you are likely to be using too much SUPERSIV®. Simply re-run the experiment with 5% less SUPERSIV® until you see the problem disappear. Normally this problem occurs when moving from a poor quality powder to SUPERSIV® and where no allowance is made for the fact that SUPERSIV® is more effective than the user’s current brand of powder. A false precipitate is a symptom of over addition.
Q7: How much SUPERSIV® Paste should I use ?
Answer: SUPERSIV® Paste is a 50:50 mixture of SUPERSIV® Powder and Virgin Castor Oil. So if you are using the SUPERSIV® Paste, then you need to double the addition rates. For example, if your formula needs 2% of SUPERSIV® Powder, then it will need 4% of SUPERSIV® Paste.
Q8: Which is Better: Powder or Paste ?
Answer: SUPERSIV® Powder is used by 90% of our customers, because it is more cost effective. However, our smaller customers (who do not have advanced powder dispersion machines) prefer to use the pre-mixed paste product, because it is more convenient for them, and easier to disperse.
To receive a free sample of Molecular Sieve Powder click on the link here, and for a free sample of Molecular Sieve Paste, click on the link here
For further information about these topics, then please click on the Expert Advisor button below, and one of our team will be very happy to help you !