Wednesday, February 12, 2014

EPO-TEK® Epoxy Adhesives for Acoustic and Ultrasound Applications

By Michael J. Hodgin
Strategic Applications Manager
Epoxy Technology, Inc.

Epoxy Technology offers many types of high performance, specialty adhesives for ultrasonic technologies and devices.  Here is some information on how we provide value to sound engineers in the various industries we serve.

Ultrasound technology is one of the most well known in the medical /healthcare industry, not only for the fetal screening of the unborn, but for imaging in general.  It is an easy and less invasive procedure over endoscopic types.  Ultrasonics can also enable cleaning technologies for dental and electronic devices.  

Today, acoustical engineering serves an industrial purpose for industries such as the oil and gas industry (motion and flow),  joining technologies (welding of plastics) and consumer devices (speakerphone and microphone components).  The scientific test industry used ultrasound for detection and ranging, whether climatic, oceanographic, or geologic related, as well as non-destructive testing (NDT) for inspecting cracks in the steel skeleton of a skyscraper, airplane or semiconductor chips.

Technology Basics
Ultrasonic technology is achieved by means of a transducer which not only detects waves, but creates them via an actuator (piezo-electric device or PZT).  Once the waves are made, they have to be shaped, or channeled correctly.  This is done by a lens layer.  Finally, acoustic matching and backing layers (i.e. blocking) are used in combination to produce waves of significance and avoiding waves of waste or interference.

Epoxy Technology Value
Our company provides products of significant value to ultrasonic and acoustical engineers for accomplishing their technological challenges.  Our dielectric epoxy products laminate the PZT structures to the ceramic carriers for creating the waves.   We also offer adhesives with varied specific gravities for acoustical matching and backing (1.0 g/mL to 4.0 g/mL) and flexible potting epoxies used at the lens level.  Our thermally conductive epoxies are used for wicking away the heat generated by many of these ultrasonic devices.

Acoustical characterization of our products, including impedance and velocity, has been performed by our university partnerships, enabling >20MHz ultrasound frequency performance and has resulted in several technical papers for review on  Acoustical properties of adhesives in general, are relatively unknown across the world, and certainly not typically characterized on data sheets.  EPO-TEK adhesives can be tailored to a specific gravity requirement and can be custom formulated to meet other desired properties.   

                        EPO-TEK Adhesives for Acoustic /Ultrasound Applications