Dow’s laminating adhesives and heat seal coatings are well documented in their significance to the food packaging industry.  For example, Dow’s solventless laminating adhesives are instrumental in creating high-performing, quick-curing multilayer flexible packaging structures to contain various food products.

There are several other applications, however, where laminating adhesives and heat seal coatings are essential for creating a variety of components used in industrial and architectural settings.  In many cases, these components are made much more durable with Dow’s laminating adhesives, which have been engineered to prolong longevity in each application. 

The sections below focus on these applications, where the advantages of using Dow’s laminating adhesives and heat seal coatings are explored.

Solar Control Window Film Laminating Adhesives

Solar control window films are thin, plastic laminates used to modify the reflectance and absorbance of glass to control the amount of sunlight and heat entering a building or vehicle.  Solar control window films are preferred in many scenarios to reduce excess greenhouse gas emissions from buildings and vehicles by reducing the burden on air-conditioning systems. 

Solar control window films may be made of PET and/or metallized PET films bonded together with a laminating adhesive.  ADCOTE™ 76R36B-33 and Coreactant 9H1H comprise an ideal two-component adhesive system used to form this laminate.  This system has superior optical clarity and UV stability to provide excellent visual transparency and durability of the window film.  Once these window films are made, they may be mounted onto glass using ADCOTE™ 89R3

Photovoltaic Backsheet Laminating Adhesives

Solar energy is a clean, renewable energy source that can help some businesses and residences save on energy costs.  Solar modules that capture and convert solar energy into electricity are made of multiple layers of material.  One of these layers is a photovoltaic backsheet, which offers protection from moisture, temperature changes, chemical attack, and physical damage to components within the solar module. 

Photovoltaic backsheets may be composed of PET/PET or PET/PVF laminate.  ADCOTE™ 503A and 811B form a polyester two-component laminating adhesive system that provides high-bond strength, optical clarity, and high levels of heat and chemical resistance, making it useful for photovoltaic backsheet laminates.   

Sailcloth and Fabric Laminating Adhesives

Much like how flexible packaging structures gain additional properties when various films and foils are bonded together, different film and fabric materials synergize when laminated together.  This synergy enables additional functionality to create high-performance fabrics, such as those used in sails.    

For example, in sailcloth applications, two layers of polyester film may be laminated with aramid scrim in between.  The resulting sailcloth has increased strength from the aramid scrim, providing a more efficient distribution of load over the sail.  In addition, the polyester film that encases the scrim provides better reinforcement and shape-holding ability and may also offer added UV protection for the sail. 

ADCOTE™ 122-HV and Coreactant 9H1H make up a two-component polyester laminating adhesive system preferred for sailcloth applications due to its high bond strength, UV and thermal resistance, and excellent age stability.

Building and Construction Laminating Adhesives

Both residences and commercial buildings leverage several types of adhesives within their overall construction.  There are some applications where laminating adhesives are specifically required. 

One example relates to high-reflectance lighting fixtures.  A highly reflective polypropylene plastic film may be laminated to stainless steel sheet metal.  The reflective polypropylene-steel laminate will diffuse light better in rooms and reduce the total amount of light fixtures needed. 

Another example applies to drip-edge flashings, which serve to direct water runoff from roofing.  A polypropylene film may first be laminated to stainless steel sheet metal to provide abrasion and chemical resistance.  Cosmetic changes to the drip edge may also be made via lamination. 

The applications above benefit from using MOR-AD™ M-805, which quickly forms high bond strength and has excellent chemical resistance.  As an added feature, polypropylene films do not need to be pre-treated to apply MOR-AD™ M-805 successfully.  Generally, any application that requires a lamination of polypropylene or polypropylene copolymer film to stainless steel, copper, aluminum foil, and even glass or wood will benefit from using MOR-AD™ M-805 as an adhesive.  

Thermal and Electrical Insulation Laminating Adhesives

In some cases, laminates may be exposed to high-temperature environments, where heat-resistant laminating adhesives are necessary.

As an example, thermally insulating materials utilize laminating adhesives in their construction.  For thermally insulating materials that also require flame retardancy, the ADCOTE™ 76R67-1 and Coreactant F laminating adhesive system is particularly recommended, as it contains flame retardant additives.  It is also great for bonding PET, met-PET, foil, and scrim together and is extremely thermally resistant. 

Electric motors also use laminates for insulation, where the insulation is rated to a certain National Electrical Manufacturer Association (NEMA) class based on its ability to withstand a specific rise in temperature while the motor operates.  Class H insulation, which is rated for operation up to 180°C, may be made from laminates of PET and Nomex® materials.  The ADCOTE™ 76P1-38 and Coreactant F laminating adhesive system is preferred here, as it provides excellent bond strength and heat resistance to lamination.  

Summary of Grades

Below is a chart summarizing the options within Dow’s industrial laminating adhesive portfolio that have been outlined thus far. 

Adhesive Coreactant Application Materials Bonded
ADCOTE™ 37R36B-33 9H1H Solar control window films PET, metallized PET
ADCOTE™ 89R3 N/A Mounting solar control window films PET, glass
ADCOTE™ 503A 811B Photovoltaic backsheet laminates PET, PVF
ADCOTE™ 122-HV 9H1H High-performance sailcloth PET, metallized PET, nylon films, aramid, polyester fabrics
MOR-AD™ M-805 N/A Polypropylene laminated sheet metal, panel boards Polypropylene, polypropylene copolymers, stainless steel, copper, aluminum foil, glass, wood
ADCOTE™ 76R67-1 F Flame-retardant thermal insulation PET, metallized PET, foil, scrim
ADCOTE™ 76P1-38 F NEMA Class H electric motor insulation PET, Nomex®

Depending on specific application requirements, an alternative laminating adhesive chemistry within Dow’s adhesive portfolio may be necessary.  For example, there are other grades that use solvents that are low- or non-VOC and may offer better viability on different substrates within these applications.  For a full list of Dow’s industrial laminating adhesive options, click here

Conclusion

Although it may not be very apparent, laminates are present in many structures that provide key infrastructure and/or resource management to residences, commercial buildings, and vehicles.  For example, solar control window films, solar panels, light fixtures, roof flashings, building insulation, electric motors, and high-performance fabric for sails are all constructed in whole, or in part, by laminating different substrates together with adhesives. 

Dow has engineered specific laminating adhesives and heat seal coatings to improve the longevity and durability of these applications, where specific properties such as optical clarity, flame retardancy, high bond strength, UV stability, and high heat and chemical resistance have been optimized. 

Contact us below to discuss your application for laminations, and we’ll be happy to make a recommendation on an adhesive.  Even if your application has not been listed above, we would be glad to learn about your project and recommend an option to test. 

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