Heat Resistant Gaskets and Washers: Mica Components
Mica components are one of the many ways in which we can harness mica’s natural heat resistant and dielectric properties to serve a whole range of industries. Mica has a natural, structural stability, making it an ideal manufacturing solution when it comes to producing heat resistant gaskets and washers, along with other vital components.
The Benefits of Washers
For such a simple concept – a disc with a hole punched out of the middle of it – the washer performs essential functions in manufacturing and a broad range of industrial applications.
Washers protect surfaces during installation, and they ensure threaded fasteners are more reliable.
They help to distribute pressure, and they prevent corrosion and movement where something is fastened together, or to something else.
Washers can make a significant difference to the lifespan of a product, and, despite their simple appearance, they come in a different types, for different functions:
Flat or plain washers are used extensively in general manufacturing and for maintenance and repair. They help distribute loads, protect against friction and reduce heat during tightening of fastenings. In various domestic and industrial applications, these washers are used as spacers. When manufactured as mica components, flat washers also provide electrical insulation.
Lock and tab washers provide security for fasteners which may otherwise come loose due to friction or torque. Lock washers are used widely in the automotive, aerospace industries and in consumer appliances such as washing machines, when in transit. Tab washers have notches, which shape the washer around bolts and nuts. This type of washer is especially effective in harsh environments, where heavy vibrations or intense heat can be the norm. Again, manufacturing them for heat resistance using mica will enhance their effectiveness.
Shoulder washers are popular in electronics, insulating fasteners or shafts within electronic equipment. They must be made of a nonconductive material and be resistant to humidity. Mica is an ideal material for shoulder washers due to its material stability and dielectric qualities.
Spring washers protect against vibration and thermal expansion to limit movement in the aerospace and automotive industries; and countersunk washers are used in furniture and carpentry, allowing countersunk screws to sit flush with a surface.
Most types and applications of washer will benefit from being heat resistant, and while there is a choice of materials for this purpose, including nylon, silicon rubber and graphite, mica proves itself to be both extremely versatile and exceptionally hardwearing.
Why Gaskets and Gasket Materials Matter
A gasket is a device used in sealing materials. Gaskets are used throughout several key industries, including electronics, automotive, aerospace and military.
Designed in sheet or ring form, gaskets create a pressure-tight seam between various stationary components. This compression seal will prevent unwanted emissions from gasses or liquids.
In various industries, these types of seals are safety-critical, and so must be resistant to pressure, electromagnetic and electrical force and fluctuations in temperature, including intense heat.
However, typically gaskets must also be flexible, to use compression effectively, and to then conform to the shapes of the harder surfaces they will be in between.
Therefore, the material which gaskets are made of is critical, which is why mica components provide ideal solutions for a wide variety of gasket applications.
Common types of gasket include:
Jacketed gaskets offer temperature, corrosion and pressure resistance through an external metal coating with a pliable filler material, which can be heat resistant.
Solid gaskets are a generally inexpensive alternative made from a single material.
Spiral wound gaskets are a combination of metal with another material, such as mica or rubber, in a winding shape. This unique design offers superior stress and thermal resistance, while retaining resilience and flexibility.
Kammprofile gaskets are designed with a corrugated steel core covered on both sides with a malleable sealing material. Their robust tensile core offers excellent support in heat exchange systems.
Gaskets can be a combination of materials or be manufactured from a single material, providing this material is sufficiently flexible and durable to withstand pressure, heat and other extreme conditions.
For example, metals on their own require large amounts of compressive force to form a seal, and have limited flexibility; while mica components are hardwearing, resistant to heat, and are both flexible and adaptable.
Mica gaskets are commonly used in turbines, exhausts and turbo chargers.
A key element in gaskets is their resistance to compression. They must be sufficiently tolerant of compressive loads, alongside intense temperatures.
Consequently, at Elmelin, we test our mica components, including our heat resistant gaskets and washers, to ensure they can withstand a range of weights and high temperatures, and that they are effective, long-lasting, and absolutely suited for their eventual purpose, whatever the industrial application.
Superior Manufacturing Support from Mica Components
Whatever the industry, the right components are essential for ensuring cost-effective, efficient and safe processes. Washers and gaskets are among various essential mica components we supply across many different industrial sectors. They are designed to be durable, heat resistant, but also lightweight, flexible and adaptable.
Please get in touch to discuss your requirements for manufacturing support. Phone +44 20 8520 2248, email email@example.com, or complete our online enquiry form. We’ll get back to you as soon as we can.