When working with composites, the development of sustainable operational practices is becoming increasingly important. The need to develop sustainable operational practices has become more significant, in part due to supply chain challenges, increasing labor costs and decreasing labor availability.
Acetone is a durable solvent often used in composite cleaning applications. Because Acetone possesses strong dissolution characteristics, it can absorb relatively high concentrations
of epoxy, polyester and vinyl ester in composite cleaning applications.
Eventually, the Acetone will become saturated with this epoxy, polyester and vinyl ester waste. Once saturated, the Acetone will need to be disposed of (incinerated) and replenished (purchased). Both disposal and acquisition expend the resources of a composite manufacturer.
Acetone is a potent chemical solvent that is frequently used to clean, degrease, strip lacquers, waxes, resins and paints. For this reason, Acetone is commonly used in varied industrial applications.
In composite applications, Acetone will dissolve and remove epoxy, polyester and vinyl ester resin from tools, brushes and surfaces. Acetone will effectively remove wax and grease for surface preparation prior to bonding.
Acetone possesses strong characteristics for use in composite cleaning applications such as:
As 3D printing adoption continues to expand, demand for IPA to clean parts is increasing in tandem. At Formlabs, we’ve increasingly been having conversations with customers about how to better incorporate sustainability best practices into their print operations. Concerns over the environmental impact of consuming large quantities of IPA, especially for companies printing with a significant amount of resin each week, have many looking for ways to recycle and reuse IPA.
Carrier Solvents in Extraction:
Ethanol vs Butane
It is true, both Ethanol and Butane (also referred to as Hydrocarbon) can be used to extract oil from cannabis and hemp. When considering which solvent to use, a processor should carefully review the safety, efficacy and working history of a given solvent in application. Operating costs can be masked and provide a false positive to select a solvent because it is less expensive to purchase, when, it is more expensive to use. This blog will explain some of these differences between Ethanol and Butane and will help guide a processor to make more informed and better decisions regarding extraction methods and carrier solvents used in these same extraction methods.
Industrial supply chains were seemingly secure prior to the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020. Since then, they have demonstrated fragility and this has led manufacturers to think of supply chains differently and more creatively in order to increase production capacity.
Essential oil extractions are performed to obtain important and valuable ingredients from plant matter and have been occurring for centuries. Early pharmaceuticals utilized extraction techniques in medicine and still today extractions from plant matter are used to obtain critical oils that are used in manufacturing medicines. An example of this is the use of yam biomatter to extract precursors for the intermediate of testosterone. Extractions are also performed to obtain many of today’s fragrances.
Ethanol is a versatile solvent that is used in a variety of applications. For example, forms of ethanol are found in distilled spirits that have been produced and consumed for hundreds of years. Ethanol is a key additive in modified forms, ethyl alcohol is used in hand sanitizer products as we all have learned during the COVID-19 epidemic in the United States.
The past year has been turbulent in many, many ways. This turbulence has introduced new variables and concerns associated with supply chains and the availability of materials. Prior to 2020, we largely were able to assume and rely on our supply chains based on conventional assumptions.
Purity can be an important measurement for organic solvents, one which an end user will often consider prior to purchase of a solvent. In parts washing applications, purity of an organic solvent is not necessarily the best measurement for effectiveness in application and solvent concentration needs to be carefully considered.