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Datec Coatings chose Vicote Coatings from Victrex Polymer as the insulating component for layers of its thick-film element, used to apply a high-power electric heat source to an aluminum substrate.

Datec’s thick-film heating system has integral conductive and resistive layers, which are screen printed directly onto an aluminum heat sink that is coated with Vicote Coatings.

This UL-recognised and RoHS-compliant technology is used to manufacture fast-acting, low-profile heaters that offer performance advantages such as high thermal conductivity and responsiveness for a wide range of industrial and consumer products.

Previously, heaters of this performance level could only be printed on stainless steel and alumina substrates.

Datec chief executive Dominic Talalla said the key to this technology is the combination of the dielectric material containing the Vicote Coating and the patented conductive and resistive materials.

He said: ‘The Vicote Coating is an excellent binder which, when combined with our other components, creates a strong bond to the substrate and provides excellent dielectric strength.

‘It works very well with our resistor and conductor layers and together, the layered system absorbs thermal expansion miss-match between the heating layers and the substrate.’ Vicote Coatings are based on Victrex PEEK polymer, a high-performance thermoplastic material.

The coating’s crystalline structure provides exceptional scratch and wear resistance, as well as strength and durability, especially at high temperatures, leading to longer-lasting components.

The dielectric properties of Vicote Coatings ensure even temperature distribution with no hot spots, fast heating and high energy density.

The result is faster and more accurate operating cycles and a reduction in energy consumption by 20 per cent.

Mr Talalla added: ‘Another key aspect of our technology is that it is processed at low temperatures, well below the 850C required to process glass-frit based thick-films.

‘This enables the use of new substrates and reduced manufacturing costs.’ By using aluminum, the heating solution is lightweight and offers superior thermal conductivity thereby delivering more heat, more efficiently to its intended target.

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