Using PU Foams as a Template for Silicone Foams

Title: FOAM-LIKE MATERIALS AND METHODS FOR PRODUCING SAME

 Number/Link:US2014/154491

Applicant/Assignee: Allergan

Publication date: 5-06-2014 (priority PCT/US)

Gist”: A polyurethane foam is impregnated with a curable liquid silicone.  After curing of the silicone the PU is removed.

Why it is interesting: According to this invention open celled polyurethane (or melamine) foam structures can be ‘converted’ into other materials like silicone, polyesters, polyolefins etc. by impregnating them with the the appropriate raw materials, curing and removing the ‘base’ foam. Optionally the ‘converted’ foam structure can be impregnated and cured again until the desired porosity is obtained.  In an example a PU foam was impregnated with a HTV silicone rubber.  After curing, the PU structure was removed using hydrogen peroxide.
While undoubtedly very interesting foam materials can be made in this way, the process seems messy and not very practical.

A 'base foam structure' (left has been impregnated and cured with another polymer (right).

A ‘base’ foam (left) and an impregnated foam (right) according to the invention.

 

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