The Relationship Between Motion and Sealing for Thermoplastic Elastomers

Motion example: Parts moving into the thermoplastic elastomer fluid seals

Thermoplastic elastomers (TPE) are ideal materials when interfacing with laboratory instruments or devices for fluid introduction, such as syringes, pipettes, lures, and needles. As the thermoplastic elastomer engages, it conforms around the inlet. Some applications may incorporate multiple inlet ports for larger throughput. Accurately positioning multiple inlet ports on a sealing interface and its bonding component for robust mass production require delicate manufacturing expertise. A streamlined collaboration between tool design, tool making and injection molding processes is key for rapid development.

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Motion example: Component affecting the thermoplastic elastomer fluid seal by screwing or clutching motions

Thermoplastic elastomers can be used to create a tight seal in applications where twisting or gripping motions are commonplace (e.g., reagent containers). This pulling and tugging motion can result in tearing or peeling in the TPE fluid seal. In these situations, it is crucial to incorporate measures to keep the TPE fluid seal intact despite the wear and tear placed on it. That’s why mechanical features specially designed to prevent misalignment from motion should be considered in the TPE fluid seal’s development. Such features can be incorporated into the thermoplastic elastomer fluid seal itself, or they can be added as gripping and blocking features of the bonding component.

Fluid-sealing guide

Complex shapes, small features, intense pneumatic pressures—manufacturing a stable fluid-sealing interface can be complicated. Download our TPE fluid-sealing guide to learn how Enplas Life Tech can help.

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When interfacing against a sheer surface as part of screw-type helical ridges, adding mechanical reinforcement features to the bonding component can augment the chemical bonding to prevent the TPE fluid seal from peeling.

For over 20 years, Enplas Life Tech has worked with industry leading clients to solve challenging TPE manufacturing problems, resulting in robust prototypes and industrial-scale manufacturing of the final product. With dedication to meticulous design review and engineering, tool building, injection molding, and assembly, Enplas Life Tech will help you speed up product development and accurately manufacture your thermoplastic fluid-sealing interface.

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