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Low volatiles content in silicones: a field of continuous improvement

Mobility & Transportation 12.11.2020

Whether you are an OEM design engineer working on a battery thermal management project for your next EV model, or a non-specialist involved in the decision process of sourcing thermal management materials… you probably landed here because of your reading of our eBook on EV Battery Thermal Management. In this eBook, you’ve understood that we recommend battery engineers to look closely at silicone materials either for the lightness of their foam when it comes to insulating battery cells, or for the adhesion and performances of their thermally conductive product ranges. That being said, we do not hide the truth: silicone materials tend to concern a little bit carmakers because of their volatile content. In this article, we will explain you why it can generate troubles. But, most importantly, how you can overcome it by working with the right suppliers, mastering the purification process to get low volatile content silicones.

Volatile molecules in silicone materials

Thermal management and battery experts convinced of the superiority of silicone performance in EV motoring systems are sometimes reticent to adopt these materials because of the presence of volatile molecules (cyclics from D3 to D10 <350ppm) in the polymers and their formulations. These species of molecules can pollute the working surface, as well as the surrounding floorspace and nearby equipments. This can generate problems for some manufacturers, who have to redesign their assembly lines and the organization of their processes to make sure the silicone is handled in controlled spaces and do not affect their environment.

Battery Thermal Management in Hybrid & Electric Vehicles:

Understand how silicone can help battery engineers

Low volatiles content silicones: a new peace of mind for carmakers

Hopefully, silicone polymers can now easily be cleaned of these volatile molecules through a purification process. Therefore, Elkem Silicones specialists are working intensively on the purification process to meet carmakers requirements.

The purity of silicones is important for having a safe usability on a production line, which is a key requirement as carmakers. As a fully integrated silicone manufacturer, we ensure all of the ingredients are strictly selected to have clean formulations. As battery specialists and materials engineers integrate silicone into their thinking and their processes, we at Elkem Silicones are working alongside you to invent better and safer products for the future.