XlynX Materials, an emerging chemical company, recently announced the creation of a new class of adhesives that the company is calling, “molecular-glues.” These make it possible to permanently adhere difficult-to-bond polymers, such as polyethylene and polypropylene to one another or other materials, providing an exceptionally strong chemical bond.
Conventional adhesives typically take advantage of mechanical forces to hold materials together. The newly launched, BondLynx, employs bis-diazirine chemistry to create covalent chemical bonds between polymer chains, permanently crosslinking them together through strong carbon-carbon bonds.
This is the same type of joinery found between carbon atoms in the polymer chains. Once BondLynx has been applied to a polymer, the crosslinking process can be initiated by heat, ultraviolet (UV)/visible light, or an electric field, depending on the specific demands of the manufacturing process.
“What’s really amazing about BondLynx is that it can ‘glue’ virtually any plastic to any other plastic,” explained Jeremy Wulff, PhD, professor of Organic Chemistry at the University of Victoria. “BondLynx acts by inserting itself into the carbon-hydrogen bonds that are present in almost every commodity polymer. The potential applications are limitless.”
BondLynx has successfully undergone adhesive testing on a wide range of polymers and polymer-metal combinations. Remarkably, even elastomers and damp surfaces can be bonded with it, opening a range of opportunities for novel medical and dental applications.
In addition to being used directly as polymeric adhesives, BondLynx molecular-glues can be applied to polymer textiles to link and strengthen the fibres. It has proven effective in strengthening ultra high-molecular weight polyethylene (UHMWPE) fabrics for ballistics protective equipment and wind sport applications.
“As a leading manufacturer of body armour products, PRE Labs had a privilege to test and use ultra-high performance fabrics crosslinked with BondLynx,” said Brad Field, CEO, PRE Labs. “Our evaluations to date have confirmed that these new generation cross linking agents can significantly enhance the tear and perforation resistance, along with mechanical properties of high-performance fabrics.”