- Conti Thermo-Protect insulation material exhibited in lab-style setting
- Exhibits as inspiration for customers’ own application ideas
- Happy to discuss and develop prototypes
Hanover, April 2017. Conti Thermo-Protect was originally developed as a highly flexible insulation system for industry – an application in which it has long proved itself. However, the material, which looks and feels like modeling clay, can do so much more: “Customers from other sectors, such as the railway industry, have also approached us with their application ideas in the meantime,” reports Tomasz Janiszewski, a product manager for elastomer coatings at ContiTech. ContiTech is showing the innovative insulation material at Hanover Fair 2017 in an exhibition in the style of a research laboratory. “Our aim is to encourage the visitors to get to know the material and experiment with it – and, in doing so, perhaps to come up with new ideas for various applications. Also as a smart material, of course, in the Industry 4.0 era,” explains Janiszewski. For example, ContiTech is presenting a model of a pressure sensor in which a cable is sheathed with Conti Thermo-Protect material. If pressure is exerted on the cable, both force and vibrations can be measured by evaluating electrical signals.
Conti Thermo-Protect consists of a special silicone rubber compound which, in its as-delivered state, can easily be cut to size, processed and fitted for a precision finish – for instance, for thermally insulating complex line and pipework systems and components. Heat action causes the compound to cure automatically and become a reusable molding with rubber-like resilience properties. It can, for example, be wrapped around pipes and valves through which flow vapors or liquids up to 250°C in temperature. A layer measuring just ten millimeters thick reduces heat loss by 70 percent. The reduced temperature on the outside is also a plus in terms of occupational health and safety. This before-and-after effect will, of course, also be clearly demonstrated at Hanover Fair using a temperature sensor.
Inspired by actual applications from other industrial sectors, however, Conti Thermo-Protect is also being presented as more than just an insulation material. A number of hands-on exhibits will enable visitors to experience the various properties – such as the smart application as a pressure sensor. In another model, the material’s strength is illustrated using a vulcanized slab which, although it feels like rubber, “is nonetheless impossible to destroy”, according to Janiszewski. In a direct comparison, visitors can handle the same slab when unvulcanized in order to experience its plastic moldability.
A fifth model demonstrates how effectively Conti Thermo-Protect can reduce structure-borne noise, for example in vehicles, in which certain components are vibrating and generating a Hall effect. No wonder, then, that Tomasz Janiszewski smilingly refers to these exhibits as a “games table”: “Ideally, this will germinate ideas among visitors as to how they can use one of these properties for their own application. If a customer is then interested, we can take the idea on together and move to the prototyping phase.”
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