Dow Corning launches new healthcare silicones

dowDOW Corning, a global leader in silicones, silicon-based technology and innovation for the healthcare industry, has introduced its new silicones, QP1 liquid silicone rubber (LSR) grades and QP1 Silicone Elastomers.

According to Dow, device manufacturers and fabricators will now have broader material choices for intricate devices and components with the QP1 LSR grades.

This family of eight translucent silicone elastomers has been developed for short-term and non-implant and insertion applications. They are available in a wide range of durometers and combine high performance, including excellent tear strength, with processing advantages that can reduce cycle times.

The materials are also US-FDA food contact compliant by formulation and are USP Class VI tested.

The QP1 LSR materials are two-part, platinum-catalyzed silicone elastomers supplied in a kit and suitable for liquid injection moulding. They combine high tear strength for optimal durability in applications facing tough physical demands, such as membranes, with low compression set, which is of particular value for parts such as seals or valves that are subjected to compression during use.

The performance of these silicone elastomers , according to Dow, also provides customers the possibility to avoid a post-curing step for certain applications, increasing productivity. Other processing advantages are batch-to-batch consistency and fast cure. When cured, they are thermally stable to 204°C (400°F) and are available in Shore A hardnesses ranging from 20 to 75.

The materials are formulated without the use of peroxides, peroxide by-products, chlorophenyls or PCBs. Nor do they use organic plasticisers, phthalates or latex additives.

Applications for QP1 LSR grades include short-term (29 days or fewer) implants such as wound drains and gastric feeding tubes, non-implant devices such as needle-less access valves, surgical devices such as anesthesia masks, and consumer products including nasal aspirators.

On the other hand. Dow’s QP1 Silicone Elastomers, a new silicone technology for the company’s high consistency rubber (HCR) product line, is suited for medical tubing and other extruded applications – including short-term implants – the one-part QP1 HCR bases are supplied uncatalysed to offer medical device OEMs and fabricators processing flexibility.

The materials provide high strength and can be platinum catalysed using Dow Corning masterbatches. Alternatively, the products can be cured using a peroxide initiated system.

Yhe QP1 Silicone Elastomers are also US-FDA food contact compliant by formulation and are USP Class VI tested. For even greater choices, the materials are available in four durometers for a range of hardnesses.

Customers choosing to work with platinum catalysed HCRs can select the company’s platinum masterbatches including QP1-47 Cross Linker, QP1-48 Cure Controller and QP1-51 Catalyst. These four-component platinum systems offer fabricators fine-grained control over multiple factors: cure curve, hardness, elongation and tensile strength.

Peroxide-initiated systems provide a cured product with good strength. Typically, a two-roll mill is used for blending.

The new QP1 HCR bases, supplied in Shore A hardnesses of 30, 50, 60 and 70, are formulated without the use of solvents, phthalates or latex additives. They meet FDA 21 CFR 177.2600 requirements for food contact components and devices.

Applications for the QP1 HCR grades include short-term (29 days or fewer) implants, such as surgical incision drains and catheters, as well as non-implant devices such as fluid handling tubing.