By Dr. Cameron Chai
3M Aerospace has launched 3M Scotch-Weld structural void fillers called the EC-3555 B/A FST and the EC-3550 B/A FST. These compounds have low density and can transform the aircraft component manufacturing method. The Scotch-Weld void filling compounds are produced using antimony-free and non-halogenated flame retardants.
The low-density void filling compounds can save both costs and time associated with aircraft production. The Scotch-Weld reduces labor time, eliminates process steps and accelerates throughput. It provides better handling attributes, non-sag performance and dispensability. In addition, it also provides several benefits in terms of productivity.
The 3M Scotch-Weld void fillers are lightweight, pumpable and extrudable. As the compounds are easy to prepare and clean, they prevent the need for mixing, weighing and re-packaging, thus reducing production time. Direct and quick application of the low-density void fillers reduces or eliminates trapped air and hand troweling. This prevents voids, porosity or pinholes. The compounds are resistant to breakouts and chip-outs.
The filling compounds are non-brittle and cure faster. They are easy to handle when compared to conventional materials. The non-sag properties enable application of the Scotch-Weld materials to numerous work pieces at a single time. They have high adhesive bond strength and paint retention properties.
In addition to reducing production time and expenditure, the void fillers help manufacturers to meet the safety guidelines for aircraft interiors. The Scotch-Weld compounds reduce total part weight and minimize shop floor expenditures, which are important for aircraft manufacturers.