NuSil Technology's commitment to silicone education is manifested in part by our investment in Whitepapers. Although many of the documents are in true Whitepaper format, we provide additional resources like a Terms & Definitions document and an Adhesive / Primer study. While some papers are broad in scope, others are industry specific. Papers are typically added monthly. Registering with our site will allow you to review the complete library and receive e-mails about new paper additions.

For further reading, please see our Technical Resources section.

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Feb 10, 2014

Elution of Dexamethasone Acetate into Buffered Saline Solution through a Silicone Elastomer Using Excipients

This study evaluated influential factors on the elution rate of a steroidal anti-inflammatory drug from a cured silicone matrix into a physiological environment.

Nov 1, 2013

Modification of Silicone Chemistry and Its Influence on Release Rates of Active Pharm Ingredients (APIs)

Advancements in silicone technology are born from studies such as this, thus augmenting through customization the ability of silicone components to meet and sustain the needs of drug delivery applications. ...

Sep 30, 2013

Silicones for High Reliability and Yield in Electronic Applications

Silicone's high adaptability lends itself to optimization for varying levels of conductivity, permeability, and other properties desirable for use in electronic systems.

Aug 1, 2013

A Brief History and Evolution of Key Regulatory Requirements for Silicones

Due to silicone’s ever-expanding role in medical devices; industry practices, standards, and regulations have and will continue to evolve.

Jul 24, 2013

New Innovations in Silicone Technology for Aircraft and Aerospace

New innovations in silicone technology that add to silicone’s prolific resume and success in the aerospace and aircraft industries are fuel and solvent resistant silicone elastomers, silicone ice-release coatings for aerodynamic surfaces, and controlled volatility silicone film adhesives.

Jul 9, 2013

Medical-Quality Silicones and Skin Care

As the body’s largest organ, not to mention its protective shield against the outside world, skin should be treated with the same care as any other body part. This level of care can be provided by silicone; innovation in silicone technology from its history in healthcare and especially medical implant...

Jun 28, 2013

Silicones in Opthalmic Applications

Assuming a natural rather than intrusive feel is a task of medical devices, and silicone rises to the challenge to help achieve this. In ophthalmic applications, silicone allows the benefits and not the burden of a device to meet the eye.

May 21, 2013

Silicone Ice-Release Coatings

When ice builds up on the leading edges of aerodynamic surfaces, it decreases lift and increases drag. Ice-release coatings significantly reduce the force required to remove ice that has adhered, for safer, more efficient use of aircraft vehicles. ...

May 16, 2013

Designing Silicones for Medical Device Applications: An Overview

A recent study by NuSil Technology evaluated the effects of barium sulfate (BaSO4) on the durometer and tensile strength of an implant-grade silicone elastomer, NuSil’s MED-4765. ...

May 6, 2013

Thermally Conductive Silicones for Space and Aircraft Applications

Silicones are highly resilient materials commonly used as adhesives and encapsulants in aircraft and aerospace applications. A valuable benefit of silicones is their ability to incorporate a variety of filler types that can impart such properties as thermal conductivity at elevated temperatures. Thermally conductive silicone adhesives and encapsulants aid in...

Oct 9, 2012

Versatility of Silicone for Electronics in Medical Devices

Since the first use of silicone for medical applications in the 1950s, this material’s chemical stability, physical strengths, and bioinertness have proven it a valuable candidate for medical device applications. Best of all, silicones are so dynamic they can be formulated to achieve specific performance, aesthetic, or therapeutic properties...

Oct 1, 2012

Troubleshooting: Platinum Catalyzed Silicones

Whether an inhibitor stalls or permanently stops a silicone from curing depends on the catalyst utilized. Understanding the effects of different inhibitors on the catalyst utilized is key to working with curable silicone systems so as to fully benefit from their unique and useful properties. A platinum catalyst allows silicones...

Aug 27, 2012

Needle Coatings to Relieve Penetration and Drag Forces of Needles

A study comparing penetration forces of uncoated and coated needles was performed to analyze and compare the efficacy of specific NuSil needle coating materials in lowering the force required to penetrate and pass through a substrate. Testing was performed on a TA.XT.plus Texture Analyzer with a 5-kg load cell. Needles coated...

Aug 1, 2012

New Technologies in Silicone Adhesives

Two-part silicone film adhesives, silicone pressure sensitive adhesives (PSAs) and silicone tacky gels are often utilized in vastly different applications — from scar treatment therapies to solar cell assemblies. When seeking to select the most suitable type of silicone to use, knowing the differences among these materials is essential. ...

Jul 10, 2012

The Effect of Infrared Spot Curing on the Cure Times of Silicone Materials for the Healthcare Industry

Utilized in a wide variety of adhesion applications — from urinary catheters to cardiac pacemakers — one-part condensation-cure adhesives have traditionally been the most commonly used silicone adhesives in the healthcare industry. Despite their acclaimed and proven effectiveness, the downside to using these adhesive systems is their long cure time...

May 22, 2012

Characterization of Fuel Resistant Fluorosilicones

Silicones are commonly used in automotive applications as potting compounds, adhesives, gaskets, seals and encapsulants due to their ability to remain elastic at low temperatures and resist breakdown at high temperatures or in UV light. In addition to a broad operating temperature range, silicones inherently possess high dielectric strength (=...

May 21, 2012

Novel Adhesions Methods for Solar Cell Assemblies

Traditionally, engineers and solar cell assemblers have used liquid silicone adhesives to bond solar cells to panel substrates such as satellites, and silicones with high light transmittance to bond cover glasses to cells. Using next generation silicone technology, low outgassing silicone pressure sensitive adhesives (PSA) and thin film sheeting can...

May 21, 2012

Non-toxic Novel Silicone Foul-release Marine Coatings

This study evaluates modified silicone elastomers as foul-release coatings. The coatings are easy to apply, cure rapidly and relatively tough materials. They are non-toxic and biologically inert but still prevent the adhesion of marine life. The coatings were tested by a novel barnacle adhesion test with adhesion results in two...

May 1, 2012

Ice-phobic Coatings on Controlled and Covered Surfaces

Ice buildup on aircraft surfaces is dangerous and can cause serious problems. The lifting surfaces of helicopters and other vertical lift vehicles are typically under a lot of stress and can, therefore, benefit greatly from coatings that improve the release of ice. In events of ice buildup, silicone’s ability to...

Apr 2, 2012

LED Packaging with Silicone Encapsulants

A Light Emitting Diode (LED) is not “one size fits all.” While many LEDs may appear similar, various applications call for different needs. Whether one is deciding how to construct the LED or what the final application is going to be, decisions on what material to use can vary drastically.

Jan 26, 2012

Designing Low Permeability, Optical-grade Silicone Systems

Unprotected electronic components exposed to moisture from high humidity may fail due to corrosion of metal leads or other unfavorable reactions on chemically sensitive components. This is of high interest for silicones that encapsulate Light Emitting Diodes (LEDs) dies. For these applications, moisture and oxygen may react with materials, such...

Jan 9, 2012

Choosing a Silicone for Joining Technologies

Engineers and material scientists are constantly looking for a polymeric adhesive that can perform in a broad operating temperature range, maintain chemical stability and offer unique mechanical properties. The dynamic attributes of silicone adhesives, sealants, coatings and encapsulants provide design engineers with a variety of solutions to the complex challenges...

Jan 9, 2012

Increasing Hair Manageability Using Silicone for Moisture Control

When considering hair, moisture is a double-edge sword. Everyone strives to achieve healthy looking, moisturized hair; shiny and strong. Dry hair, on the other hand, is associated with damage and brittleness. Why is it then that a humid or rainy day — full of moisture in the air — concerns...

Oct 21, 2011

Fluorosilicones in the Aerospace Industry

Fluorosilicone’s advent into the commercial marketplace offers opportunities for manufacturers to pursue new applications for silicones in the automotive, aircraft and general markets. The unique properties of fluorosilicones provide a solution for products that need broad operating temperatures, fuel resistance and long-term reliability. Conventional dimethyl silicones cannot survive the harsh...

Apr 4, 2011

Choosing a Silicone Encapsulant for Photovoltaic Applications

Non-phenyl containing 1.41 RI silicones have been used for several years for bonding solar arrays in the satellite industry. Phenyl groups on the siloxane polymer can change various properties of the silicone. Understanding how phenyl affects these properties allows the engineer to understand the benefits and risks when...

Dec 22, 2009

Using Optical Index Matching Silicone Gels to Improve Outdoor Viewing and Ruggedness of Displays

Portable computing, military environments, and demanding outdoor activities like fire rescue require a reliable and accurate display. The bright ambient light outdoors can cause high reflection losses and subsequently “display washout.” A growing trend is use of optical index matching silicone gels to reduce reflection losses and also aid in...

Dec 15, 2009

Versatility and Flexibility from Low Outgassing Silicones

Miniaturization of electronic packages has led to using thinner and more fragile materials. This, in combination with the use of lead-free solder with solder reflow temperatures up to 260°C, can cause high shear stress during heating and cooling that can damage a device. Subsequently, there is growing interest in...

Dec 1, 2009

Understanding the Role of Silicones in Controlled Release Applications

Silicones possess certain dynamic characteristics which allow them to be compounded in with a host of actives. These same unique characteristics also allow them to release those actives from a molded/extruded device in a predictable way – whether that application is for transdermal, transmucosal, short or long-term human implantation.

Nov 25, 2009

Recent Developments in Ultra Low Outgassing Silicones for Space Application

In this study, these 2-part, platinum cure, RTV silicones are compared to standard low outgassing materials, CV-2289 and CV10-2568. The physical properties are compared looking for any property losses, and the TML’s and CVCM’s are compared and analyzed according to ASTM E 595 standards and the outgassing kinetics from ASTM...

Jun 8, 2009

Controlled Volatility Silicone Materials: Development and Analysis of Ultra Low Outgassing Elastomer For Space

In this paper, we compare a standard controlled volatility silica reinforced silicone adhesive that has a history of use in aerospace applications with a newly developed equivalent Ultra Low OutgassingTM version that exceeds typical ASTM E 595 requirements achieving < 0.1 % TMLs and < 0.01% CVCMs. We will...

Jan 1, 2009

Silicones for Drug Delivery Combination Devices: Interview with Brian Nash of NuSil Technology

Recently, NuSil launched a comprehensive line of silicone materials and services intended specifically for use in drug delivery combination medical device applications. Drug Delivery Technology recently sat down with Brian Nash, Vice President of Marketing and Sales at NuSil Technology, for an exclusive interview to discuss how they are providing...

Oct 9, 2008

Adding Color to Medical Devices

Medical device companies continue to support the healthcare community by distinguishing models, sizes and improving the aesthetics of the device with the addition of color. Color in medical devices offers a number of benefits in marketing the device. Adding color can help differentiate the product in a competitive marketplace, and...

May 18, 2008

Material and Process Innovations with Filled Silicone Elastomers

Today the technological progress of modern military aircraft design has been greatly influenced by the use of advanced composite materials. These materials permit design of lighter stronger more flexible aircraft yet offers a new set of challenges in design, production and quality.

Apr 30, 2008

Evaluation of Phosphor Settling Rate in Silicone Encapsulant

Working with LED manufacturers reveals a common problem: how to effectively add phosphor to the silicone encapsulant without having it settle or incur processing problems like curing too soon, deairing and bubbles. A study was done to evaluate two silicone encapsulation materials for their ability to maintain phosphor in solution for ease of manufacturing...

Feb 13, 2008

A Characterization of Yellowing Caused by UV Radiation on Silicone Encapsulants, and Improvements in Future Materials

This study evaluates twenty-one samples for their change in optical transmission due to a 680-6800J/cm2 dose of UV radiation. Samples were made from UV curing acrylate, epoxy and silicone chemistries. All samples were prepared and exposed the same way so that comparisons between the samples would be meaningful. Given the same dosage...

Jan 18, 2008

A Silicone-Based Ice-Phobic Coating for Aircraft

The problem of ice build-up in an engine or on the leading edges of a plane is a significant problem in the aircraft industry. Ice build up can affect many aspects of flying such as lift, drag, and thrust. Under the direction of Pratt & Whitney in 2004, the Department of the...

Jan 18, 2008

Evaluation of Removal Rate of Cured Silicone Adhesive from Various Electronic Packaging Substrates by Solvent and Silicone Digesters for Rework Applications

Reworking electronic packages is an integral process related to diagnostics and salvaging valuable materials. It is a meticulous and time-consuming procedure that requires some knowledge of the package material composition to determine compatible cleaning solutions and processes. Silicone adhesives are being used more frequently due to their ability to minimize shear stress during temperature...

Nov 8, 2007

A Silicone-Based Ice-Phobic Coating for Aircraft

The problem of ice build-up in an engine or on the leading edges of a plane is a significant problem in the aircraft industry. Ice build-up can affect many aspects of flying such as lift, drag, and thrust. Under the direction of Pratt & Whitney in 2004, the Department of the Army, Engineer...

Jun 28, 2007

Processing Silicone Polymers: A Foundation for Creating Consistent Silicone Systems

The unique chemistry of silicone polymers are customizable to create a variety of material types with a specific properties. The polymer properties have proved useful in a number of applications, including drug delivery. Silicone polymers represent the basis of all silicone systems, adhesives, gels, elastomers, and resins. Silicone polymers are...

Jun 11, 2007

Characterization of Ultra Low Outgassing™ Silicone Materials for Aerospace Applications

The Aerospace Industry has used silicone adhesives and coatings for over five decades. Silicones ability to maintain its elasticity and low modulus over a broad temperature range, –130 to 260°C, provides excellent utility in space, where spacecraft are often exposed to these extreme temperatures. The National Aeronautics & Space Administration...

Jan 23, 2007

A Characterization of UV Effects on Optical Silicones used in Opto-electronic Devices and New Developments in Resistant Materials

Opto-electronic devices such as LEDs, optical sensors, LCDs and color filters have the need for optically transparent encapsulants or adhesives. Maintaining the highest transmission possible of the encapsulant/adhesive throughout the life of the device is a critical criteria for the device designer. Silicones as encapsulants/adhesives in opto-electronic devices have been...

Nov 28, 2006

Solvent Resistance of Silicones used for Electronic Packaging Applications

Silicones are becoming more popular in advanced packaging for their thermal stability above 200oC and ability to protect the electronic package from environmental factors. The electronic package may be exposed to a variety of different solvents by fabricators in the cleaning process. Problems arise when the silicone swells with solvent.

Sep 28, 2006

How Temperature Effects Transmission of Silicone Encapsulants

This paper describes five optically clear materials that were evaluated for changes in optical transmission due to temperature (150°C). Initial testing revealed that 150°C temperature exposure enabled reactions between the silicone being tested and the gasket material used to form the sample preparation. Observation of the cross contamination accelerated by...

Jul 31, 2006

Overcoming Package Stress in Flip Chips with Low Outgassed Silicone Materials to Reduce Contamination

The EU mandates for lead free solders are often soldered at higher temperatures than lead and have created a need for electronic packaging materials that can handle these thermal cycling extremes. Thermal Interface Materials (TIMs) and Underfills based on low outgassed silicone chemistry can aid the designer in overcoming thermal...

Jul 26, 2006

Comparing Silicone Pressure-Sensitive Adhesives to Silicone Gels for Transdermal Drug Delivery

Transdermal, drug-delivery applications mandate the use of adequate adhesive systems to not only keep the pharmaceutical agent in contact with the intended surface, but to facilitate sustained, controlled delivery. An engineer who must determine which silicone chemistry is optimal for their device has a few options. This paper will investigate...

May 1, 2006

New Low Stress Film Adhesive for Aerospace Applications Requiring Low Outgassing

Low stress liquid adhesives based on silicone chemistry have been used for years in the aerospace industry requiring low outgas, ASTM E-595 requirements (1). The applications include coverglass adhesives, mirror bonding, potting of electronic parts and many more. Silicones are valued for their dependability during extreme temperature cycling and inherently...

Dec 19, 2005

Low Outgas Silicone Pressure Sensitive Adhesive for Aerospace Applications II

The aerospace industry, primarily satellite manufacturers, have expressed the need for a low outgas, thermally stable, adhesive tape. The current products in the marketplace have limitations at both high, 175ºC, and low, -100ºC, temperatures. A new silicone Pressure Sensitive Adhesive (PSA) was developed to pass ASTM E-595(1), low outgassing requirements...

Mar 18, 2005

Index Matching Silicone for High Brightness LED Packaging

Although silicone technology has been around for over 5 decades, this unique material continues to find usage in new applications. Its various functionalities allow its usage as fuel resistant gaskets, inert implantable devices in the body, coatings for Atomic Oxygen protection in space, and for interocular lenses for cataract disease.

Mar 18, 2005

Low Outgassing Materials for Electro-Optic and Electronic Systems

This paper explores the need for low outgassing, thermally stable, high performance materials for electrooptic and electronic systems, citing various applications of low outgassing materials in electro-optic and electronic systems. This paper also describes the chemistry of silicone polymerization, identifying the source of outgassing components in silicones as well as...

Mar 2, 2005

Phosphors and Silicone Dispersions

From the perspective of a silicone material chemist, this paper will address the benefits of using silicone in phosphor dispersions for High Brightness LED (HBLED) packages. This investigation first provides an overview of how versatile of a material silicone can be to the HB LED industry. An examination of the...

Nov 4, 2004

Optical Silicones for use in Harsh Operating Environments

The optics industry widely uses silicones for various fiber optic cable potting applications and light emitting diode protection. Optics manufacturers know traditional silicone elastomers, gels, thixotropic gels, and fluids not only perform extremely well in high temperature applications, but also offer refractive index matching so that silicones can transmit light...

Jul 1, 2004

Choosing a Silicone Adhesive & Treatment System

As devices become smaller and bonds more critical, choosing the right adhesive system may be essential to the success of the device.This article investigates some adhesives and primers used to adhere difficult substrates.

Jun 25, 2004

Drug Delivery Market Summary

Silicones have been cited as materials regularly used in drug delivery devices. These drug delivery devices incorporating silicones primarily fall into three major categories:
  • Implanted delivery devices
  • Mucosal delivery devices
  • Transdermal delivery devices
Implanted drug delivery devices include spinal treatment devices, ocular treatment devices and contraceptive devices. These delivery configurations typical utilize silicone...

Jun 24, 2004

Silicone Adhesives and Primers on Low Surface Energy Plastics and High Strength Metals for Medical Devices

This paper will demonstrate the ability of silicone adhesives, with the aid of primers, flame treatment, or plasma treatment, to adhere to low surface energy plastics and to high strength metals. In general, some plastics are difficult to adhere to because of their low surface energy, available bond sites, and...

Jun 16, 2004

Low Outgas Silicone Pressure Sensitive Adhesive for Aerospace Applications

The need for a low outgas, thermally stable, high performance adhesive has initiated the development of a new experimental silicone Pressure Sensitive Adhesive (PSA) able to pass ASTM E-595, low outgassing requirements of 1% or less Total Mass Loss (TML) and 0.1% or less Collectable Volatile Condensable Materials (CVCM). The...

Jun 14, 2004

Silicones as a Material of Choice for Drug Delivery Applications

This paper will investigate the benefits of using silicone in drug delivery applications. This investigation first provides an overview of how versatile of a material silicone can be to the drug delivery industry. An examination of the chemistry of silicone, the multiple material composition options and various cure chemistries demonstrates...

Jun 8, 2004

Adhering to Difficult Substrates

Adhesive echnology is equal parts chemistry and ‘black magic’. Because there are so many different substrates, each adhesive can not be actually tested before hand on each and everyone. However, by testing on some novel substrates, or difficult to adhere to, inferences can be made which can narrow the choices...

Sep 25, 2003

Silicone Adhesives and Primers on Low Surface Energy Plastics and High Strength Metals

This paper will demonstrate the ability of silicone adhesives, with the aid of primers, to adhere to low surface energy plastics and to high strength metals. In general, some plastics are difficult to adhere to because of their low surface energy, available bond sites, and chemical interaction. Most plastic have...

Feb 17, 2003

Accelerating Cure of Silicone Adhesives

This paper will demonstrate the availability of dramatically accelerating the cure of certain silicone adhesives and their advantage to the manufacturing process. A ‘fast cure’ adhesive is defined as full cure in less than ten minutes—or partial cure for handling under five minutes and full cure at room temperature in...