Silicone Foams for Demanding Performance of Railcar Flooring Systems Available from Rogers Corp.

Rogers Corporation, a global technology leader in the development and manufacture of high performance, specialty-material-based products, is pleased to announce the availability of BISCO® L3-A silicone foams, which were developed specifically to meet the demanding performance requirements of railcar flooring systems. The silicone foam provides rolling stock manufacturers with a low weight, low flame, and low smoke solution for acoustic applications within railcar interiors. By consistently demonstrating low stiffness and excellent elasticity, Rogers BISCO L3-A will ensure maximum vibration isolation properties under all travel conditions.

"The driving force behind Rogers' development of this unique silicone foam technology is the global market need for the rail industry to improve safety and reduce noise thereby enhancing travelers' comfort and satisfaction,” Premal Patel, senior market development specialist, Rogers Corporation, BISCO Silicones. According to the European Rail Research Advisory Council (EERAC), the European high-speed rail network has expanded in Spain, UK, France, Germany and Italy—where it has become the mode of choice, taking market share from air and road. Paul Kennedy, technical director for a leading UK-based rail supplier said, "Continuing innovation is vital within the modern rail industry in order for manufacturers to meet the demands of the train operators, government bodies and the end user. We work closely with industrial designers and engineers, including Rogers Corporation, who specialize in developing materials that meet high smoke-fire and toxicity standards. The company's BISCO L3-foam satisfies regulatory initiatives for a safer, more efficient traveling environment.”

The impact of vibration on product quality and consumer satisfaction makes vibration control a key design factor in all passenger rail cars. In trains, noise performance can be significantly improved by reducing the transmission of structure-borne vibration and sound from the tracks to the passenger compartment via the floor. Vibration control is an important design consideration in transportation vehicles as the constant motion of parts while the vehicle is moving can result in noise and possible damage to the structural frame or components.

BISCO L3-A silicone foam provides the following performance requirements over existing urethane and silicone alternatives:

  • Enhanced flame resistance, improved safety: Satisfies the highest levels of safety protection as mandated by British BS 6853 (Cat 1a), French NF F 16-101 (M1 F1), and U.S. NFPA 130 safety standards.
  • Improved vibration isolation: Isolates greater than 99.9 percent of vibration energy (-10dB transmissibility).
  • Reduced vibration, quieter cabins: Dissipates 73 percent more energy than alternative materials.
  • Lower weight, lower cost: Weighs 25 percent lighter than competitive urethane or silicone foams.
  • Superior durability, less maintenance: Exhibits unmatched stress relaxation performance when compared to other foam polymers, such as urethane, Neoprene and melamine.

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