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A comprehensive understanding of UltraCarb

On our quest to have a complete understanding of the unique minerals huntite and hydromagnesite Minelco’s polymer technologist was sponsored to complete a PhD.

Luke Hollingbery completed a PhD entitled “Decomposition and Fire Retardancy of Naturally occuring mixtures of Huntite and Hydromagnesite”. During the course of the PhD project Dr Hollingbery started to write articles for submission into international academically refereed journals. To date five of his papers have been published, these are:

  • The Thermal Decomposition of Huntite and Hydromagnesite - A Review

Published in Thermochimica Acta by L A Hollingbery and T R Hull

  • The Fire Retardant Behaviour of Huntite and Hydromagnesite – A Review

Published in Polymer Degradation and Stability by L A Hollingbery and T R Hull

  • The Fire Retardant Action of Mineral Fillers

Published in Polymer Degradation and Stability by T R Hull, Artur Witkowski, and L A Hollingbery

  • The Thermal Decomposition of Natural Mixtures of Huntite and Hydromagnesite

Published in Thermochimica Acta by L A Hollingbery and T R Hull

  • The Fire Retardant Effects of Huntite in Natural Mixtures with Hydromagnesite

Published in Polymer Degradation and Stability by L A Hollingbery and T R Hull

Minelco now have a far more detailed appreciation of how the UltraCarb product acts as a fire retardant in polymer compounds. Highlights of this work include:

  • A detailed mechanism for the decomposition of both huntite and hydromagnesite
  • A new appreciation for the fire retardant action of both huntite and hydromagnesite
    • Hydromagnesite is active in the early stages of the fire, endothermically releasing water and carbon dioxide; this helps to reduce the initial spread of the fire
    • Huntite is active in the later stages of the fire; the platy particles build a strong char layer (far stronger than other mineral flame retardants) which inhibits the further development of the fire.
    • Both huntite and hydromagnesite have an active part to play in fire retardancy; something which had not been previously quantified.

This in-house knowledge enables Minelco to confidently and accurately assist customers to optimise their polymer compounds with the UltraCarb grades required to meet their requirements.

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