ORLANDO, Fla.—Specialty Silicone Products Inc. has received a U.S. Department of Defense Product Qualification Program (QPL) certification for its silver-aluminum flouorosilicone.
SSP-2486-70 was certified by the Defense Logistics Agency as MIL-DTL-83528 Type D, a designation given to flouorosilicones with 90 dB of plane wave shielding effectiveness at 10 GHz, with a continuous use temperature range of -55°C to +160°C and are resistant to jet fuels.
Speaking at the Gasketing and Converting Expo on April 6 in Orlando, executives from the firm detailed how the certification has had a positive impact on Specialty Silicone.
“It opens a lot of opportunities to us for all these fabricators who are making gaskets for their customers,” SSP Account Representative Domininc Testo said. “They (now) have some alternative suppliers in the marketplace that are more flexible, have better lead times and better service.”
SSP said it supplies SSP-2486-70 as fully-cured, conductive sheet stock; continuous extrusion profiles; or a ready-to-mold compound. The firm said to earn a QPL listing for a product, manufacturers must establish and maintain a program that meets rigorous requirements for the military specification.
Brian Bayly, director of technology and quality at SSP, said it took the firm about six months to develop the new product. He added that the certification process includes the Defense Logistics Agency giving SSP's lab and test methods the stamp of approval, in addition to auditing the firm's building and quality management systems.
The specification allows SSP to sell a qualified product to the Department of Defense. The agency qualifies it so SSP can sell it to defense contractor. Adam Stiles, director of sales and marketing at SSP, said a QPL qualification gives customers confidence that it can go into a critical application—for instance where it would be protecting electronics or a weapons system.
Testo said the firm invested in a piston extruder to make extruded profiles for a customer out of the new spec material.
The investment was made possible because SSP recently had freed up floor space by adding about 19,000 square feet to its operation, a good portion of that built to clean room standards, which Stiles said eventually will be certified.
“As a business, we're focused on speed and flexible service. We try to turn around R&D and new products very quickly,” Stiles said.
“We make the compound so it will supply to fabricators or mold shops a compound that they can process further. We convert the product to sheets or rolls, and the rolls are really what make us unique. We can take the processing time down and making it on a continuous roll gives us a lot of flexibility.”
The company operates a 54,000-sq.-ft. facility in Ballston Spa, N.Y., with about 63 employees. It solely is focused on silicone chemistry with two divisions—laboratory products, which produces a silicone with a polytetrafluoroethylene laminate used in caps to contain vile contents; and industrial products that includes silicone compounding.
The recent clean room expansion will serve the firm's laboratory products segment.
“Our roll technology allows us to make custom lengths and thicknesses without new tooling,” Testo said. “It also allows us to have about a month to a month and a half better lead time compared to our competitors in the area.”