Morgan itroduces new insulating and piezoelectric products
13 June 2015
Morgan Advanced Materials has added a new type of insulating fire brick to its range, along with what are believed to be the world’s thickest piezoelectric ceramic blocks.
Based on slinger technology, the the JM-HD (High-density) series bricks are made from Kaolin and high purity alumina which react together to form Mullite during the firing process, where temperatures can reach in excess of 1400°C.
The slinger process is essentially the low-pressure extrusion of a wet clay mix containing high levels of burnout additives, with the additional processing step that the semi-extruded material gets ‘slung’ onto a continuous belt to generate additional porosity, before drying and firing.
In what the company is describing as a major breakthrough for the technical ceramics sector, Morgan is now manufacturing what are believed to be the world’s thickest piezoelectric ceramic blocks.
The blocks, designed for use in ultra-low frequency SONAR applications down to 18kHz, are made of high-quality, hard (Navy I) lead zirconate titanate (PZT) - Morgan’s own proprietary formulation, known as PZT401.
They offer superb electrical characteristics, are of high sintered density and are suitable for the manufacture of wide bandwidth 1-3 composite transducers for deep sea applications.
However, the most striking feature of the new PZT ceramic blocks is their size, and in particular their thickness: at present, a maximum of 42mm. Various combinations of length and width are available on request.
Large dimension PZT blocks are suited to a range of high-integrity applications, such as side scan SONAR, sub bottom profilers and transducers for surveying systems. The 'hard' PZT from which they are made provides excellent sensitivity and permittivity, making it ideal for use in sensing applications requiring a wide bandwidth.
They are available in block form or as diced and filled with specially formulated epoxies for use in 1-3 composites, with a range of metallisation treatments also available. This is in addition to Morgan’s existing manufacturing capability for large ‘soft’ PZT blocks.
FDA 'Letter of Opinion'
Morgan Advanced Materials has also received a favourable 'letter of opinion' from the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) for a variety of its carbon/graphite, sintered silicon carbide, and reaction bonded silicon carbide materials produced by its Seals and Bearings business.
The letter of opinion covers repeated-use wear components for food applications, including mechanical face seals, bearing, bushings, vanes, and rotors.
Previously acknowledged as the GRAS (Generally Recognised As Safe) designation provided by FDA, the letter of opinion offers a level of comfort to equipment manufacturers and their end user customers that the materials are considered safe by experts.
Morgan’s carbon/graphite and silicon carbide materials possess superior tribological and wear characteristics, making them an ideal choice for mechanical seal faces and bearings. They are suitable for use in food industry pump and mixer applications because of their dimensional stability and chemical inertness.
They are also suitable high temperature ovens in which seal faces come into contact with food products, which precludes the use of typical lubricated bearings.
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