Spotlight on Exhibitor – Glassflake
Monday, 1 April 2019
What technologies or materials do you specialise in?
Glassflake Ltd specialise in the manufacture of platelet, high aspect ratio glassflake. Glassflake Ltd has patented an innovative manufacturing process which has enabled accurate control of glass composition and the production of thinner flake (as low as 100nm) with uniform thickness and exceptional consistency. Glassflake is used as a performance enhancer for a wide range of products in coatings and polymers, and also for decorative effects.
What are the benefits of your technologies or materials?
Compared to fibre or granular fillers, glassflake imparts unique properties to any products where strength, stability and durability are required. Glass is also chemically inert, has a neutral mass tone and high mechanical strength. As a result, glassflake creates an impervious physical barrier which can enhance fire retardancy, moisture/ gas permeation, chemical resistance, isotropic dimensional stability, thermal stability, abrasion resistance and Young’s Modulus. Reducing flake thickness increases the packing density at lower flake addition levels, subsequently increasing performance at reduced cost.
Furthermore, due to the uniform thickness of the flake and optical clarity of the glass, glassflake can be used as a substrate to create effect pigments and functional additives with intense lustre and brightness, UV and weather resistance and electrical conductivity.
What will you be showcasing at The Advanced Materials Show?
Glassflake Ltd will be presenting our ability to accurately engineer glass composition, flake physical and mechanical properties, treatment capabilities and ultimately our ability to produce innovative solutions for a vast array of industrial requirements and customer needs. For example increasing dielectric strength, reducing alkali hydrolysis, reducing heavy metal content and enhancing barrier performance.
What has been your organisation’s biggest achievement in 2018/19?
The innovative processing technology developed in-house has enabled Glassflake Ltd to successfully expand into novel applications and exploit key benefits offered by glassflake. In 2018 Glassflake Ltd was able to supply superior products for effect pigments and cosmetics industries. Such products are subjected to rigorous internal QA testing and surpass regulatory requirements.
What might surprise people about your work and applications with advanced materials?
The breadth of Glassflake Ltd customers and diversity of product applications. Glassflake was originally developed ca. 60 years ago and was used exclusively used to enhance the gas and moisture resistance of coatings used in severe environments. However, advances in product experience and knowledge at Glassflake Ltd have led to successful developments in a variety of new in industries, including; printing inks, powder coatings, floor coatings, decorative paints, conveyor belting, carpet backing and fibres, automotive brake pads, adhesives and sealants, food/ beverage packaging, rubber compounds and additive manufacturing.
Glassflake Ltd continues to invest and enhance the unique properties of glassflake in order to maximise product diversification and meet the toughest industrial demands.
Glassflake are suppliers of innovative glass flake products to different global industries. You were the first to produce flakes using a rotary process. What innovations and new product applications are you currently working on?
Currently, we are working on the development of a unique energy saving technology for the production of glassflake. We are also developing a high strength glass composition for enhanced reinforcement in thermoplastic applications.
Furthermore, we are continuing to optimise glassflake performance for fire retardant applications such as cables and intumescent paint.
Glass flakes have been extensively used in the coatings industry for many years, what is the most unique application you have seen?
Over the years, we have seen a wide range of unique applications. For example, vehicle and bicycle tyres where glassflake is used to reduce gas permeation and roll resistance and to modify the sidewall veneer properties. Glassflake has also been used to increase the UV resistance in sun protection formulations; sun protection factor (SPF) can be significantly increased from SPF 15 to SPF 80.
Glassflake are exhibiting at the Advanced Materials Show on stand 1123. What can visitors expect to see from your stand? What are you showcasing?
Visitors can expect to see the wide range of applications and performance benefits made possible by engineered flake compositions, particle size and thickness values ranging from 5µm to 80nm.
You have a reputation for open innovation, working with other global leading organisations and universities. What partnership are you most proud of?
Glassflake Ltd is especially proud of its partnership with Croda International PLC. This partnership has developed successful personal care formulations using our Moonshine® effect pigments. This partnership continues to grow and expand globally.
What excites you most about the advanced materials industry? What will you be looking out for yourselves at The Advanced Materials Show 2019?
At Glassflake Ltd, we are excited to learn about novel applications where glassflake can improve performance, and identify new and successful business partnerships.