Minerals are used extensively in many plastic and rubber applications. LKAB Minerals manufacture and supply a wide range of mineral products developed for this industry which impart a variety of properties from flame retardancy to reinforcement.
Reinforcement and dimensional stability
We manufacture both muscovite and phlogopite mica products for the plastics industry. When used in plastics, LKAB Minerals' MicaFort, a functional filler, imparts many benefits. One advantage is the platy nature of Mica; the particles align in the same direction during moulding. This means that MicaFort significantly increases plastics stiffness and greatly reduces distortion. As Mica is inert it can be used in variety of polymer types and end use applications. Excellent mechanical properties can be achieved with Mica addition levels as low as 10 to 20%.
Char promoting fire retardancy
UltraCarb is the brand name for our flame retardant mineral product range. UltraCarb is produced from natural deposits containing two minerals; huntite and hydromagnesite. UltraCarb is a natural and inorganic mineral flame retardant and smoke suppressant. It is used in a wide range of polymers such as polyethylene, polypropylene and PVC. The high heat absoprtion of UltraCarb protects polymers from a rapid thermal degradation and the formation of combustible products.
MagniF is the brand name for magnetite grades which are used as a filler in polymer and rubber applications. MagniF is used primarily for its high density however it is also thermally and electrically conductive, ferri-magnetic and heatable by microwaves. MagniF filled polymers are considered straightforward to compound and mould. MagniF is particularly suitable for sound and vibration dampening applications within the automotive industry.
DekorFlake is the brand name for our decorative mica products; this range is available in a variety of particle sizes and four natural colours. DekorFlake is compatible with a variety of organic and inorganic matrices and systems. The flakes are resistant to UV, weather, chemical and thermal degradation. Typical uses of DekorFlake include sanitary ware, polymer based flooring, solid surfacing, consumer plastic parts and containers, toys and cosmetic packaging.
FireCarb is the brand name for our expandable graphite product range. FireCarb is used in PVC door seals and pipe collars in the passive fire protection industry. The expansion of the FireCarb filled seals when exposed to heat provides a barrier to flame and smoke thus inhibiting the spread of fire.
Chalk whiting is used as a general purpose filler in rubbers and plastics to reduce overall costs and to enhance the polymer’s properties. Coated grades of Chalk are particularly well suited to PVC applications as they reduce plasticizer demand, assist dispersion and act as a processing aid.
Flame retardancy and smoke suppression
ATH is used in plastics primarily for its fire retardant action. ATH is a non-smoking, low toxicity, halogen free flame retardant mineral making it useful in a variety of applications. Typical ATH applications include glass reinforced plastic (GRP), encapsulation resins, cable bedding compounds, solid surfacing, carpet backing and foam.