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What is Vulcanized Rubber?

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Vulcanized Rubber: Rubber is a natural or synthetic material made from the sap of certain trees or synthetic polymers. Known for its resilience, durability, and resistance to water, chemicals, and temperature changes. Rubber is used in a wide variety of products including tires, tubes, belts, gaskets, and flooring. It is also used to make products that require flexibility and durability, such as rubber bands and gloves. Rubber can be made in many different forms such as sheets, blocks, or liquid form, and it can be processed and treated in various ways to make it more suitable for different applications.

Vulcanization-of-Rubber

Vulcanization of Rubber

What is Vulcanization?

A chemical process through which the physical properties of any natural or synthetic rubber are improved, which results in stronger rubber, more elasticity over wide temperatures, and also more resistance to swelling as well as abrasion. The heating of rubber with sulfur forms the base of the vulcanization process.

Vulcanization of Rubber

Vulcanization is a chemical process that transforms rubber from a sticky, deformable material into a more durable and resilient material. This is a process that improves rubber’s elasticity and strength, making it more resistant to heat, chemicals, and other environmental factors. Charles Goodyear made this discovery in 1839.

The vulcanization process involves heating rubber to high temperatures along with other chemicals such as sulfur and accelerators. The sulfur atoms crosslink with rubber molecules, forming a network of chemical bonds that give the rubber enhanced properties. This process is called “vulcanization”. Originally, it was believed that Vulcan, the Roman god of fire and metalworking, was responsible for this transformation.

Vulcanization makes rubber more durable and more resistant to abrasion, tearing, and environmental influences. It also increases elasticity and strength, making it suitable for use in products such as tires and tubes. Vulcanized rubber is also highly resistant to heat, chemicals, and ozone, making it more durable and reliable in a wide range of applications. Vulcanized rubber is widely used in various industries such as tires, conveyor belts, gaskets, seals, and many other industrial applications.

Working on Vulcanization Process

Sulfur is mostly used for the process of vulcanized materials and both natural and synthetic rubber. A pressurized mold has been used for heating rubber and sulfur at 280-350 degrees Fahrenheit and rubber is combined with heat and chemicals, the rubber tends to retract as well as hardens. Other important chemicals used in the process would include the following:

  • Urethane
  • Metal oxides
  • Peroxide¬†
  • Urethane

Objective of Vulcanisation 

Let’s have a look at the objectives:

  1. Increase the strength and elasticity of rubber: Tires, hoses, and straps because vulcanization improves the mechanical properties of rubber such as tensile strength, elongation, and compression set.
  2. To make rubber more resistant to environmental influences: Vulcanization makes rubber more resistant to heat, ozone, weather, and chemicals, making it more suitable for outdoor and industrial applications.
  3. Improve the processability of rubber: Vulcanization improves the processability of rubber, making it suitable for manufacturing a variety of products such as tires, hoses, and gaskets that require different shapes and sizes.
  4. Extending the Life of Rubber Products: Vulcanization extends the life of rubber products, making them more reliable and cost-effective in the long run.
  5. To improve the wear resistance of rubber products: Vulcanization improves the wear resistance of rubber products and is suitable for applications that require high wear resistance such as tires and conveyor belts.

Features of Vulcanisation

The features of vulcanization are as follows:

  1. Vulcanization is a chemical process that improves the physical and mechanical properties of rubber.
  2. This is based on the addition of sulfur or other chemicals such as accelerators that cross-link with the rubber molecules to form a network of chemical bonds.
  3. In this process, rubber is heated to high temperatures along with sulfur and other chemicals.
  4. Vulcanization increases the strength and elasticity of rubber, making it suitable for use in products requiring high strength and elasticity such as tires, hoses, and belts.
  5. It also improves the rubber’s resistance to heat, ozone, weather, and chemicals, making it more suitable for outdoor and industrial use.
  6. Rubber can now be processed more easily thanks to vulcanization, making it ideal for producing a range of goods including tires, hoses, and gaskets that call for various forms and sizes.
  7. Extends the life of rubber products for long-term reliability and cost-effectiveness.
  8. Vulcanization improves the wear resistance of rubber products, making it suitable for applications that require high wear resistance such as tires and conveyor belts.
  9. The vulcanization process can be carried out in various ways, such as sulfur vulcanization, peroxide vulcanization, and radiation vulcanization, depending on the specific application and desired properties of the rubber.

Drawbacks of Vulcanisation

The drawbacks of vulcanization are as follows:

  1. A disadvantage of vulcanization is that it requires high temperatures and pressures, which can be energy intensive and expensive.
  2. This process also produces waste and by-products that are environmentally hazardous if not handled properly.
  3. The use of sulfur and other chemicals in the vulcanization process can produce harmful by-products such as sulfur oxides, which can be harmful to the environment and human health if not handled properly. I have.
  4. The vulcanization process can also reduce the clarity and color of the rubber. This can be a problem in certain applications where rubber appearance is important.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the difference between natural and synthetic chemicals?

The main difference between natural and synthetic chemicals is that natural rubber is polyisoprene and comes from tropical as well as subtropical trees. The synthetic rubber is neoprene and composed of chloro and butadiene.

What is the disadvantage of natural rubber?

The disadvantage natural rubber has is its vulnerability to organic acid attacks and is permanently deformed it is stressed too much.

What is called vulcanized rubber?

Vulcanized rubber refers to those type of rubber which is hardened by the use of heat and sulfur.



Last Updated : 17 Jan, 2024
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