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Participant

Join Date: Jun 2014
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Adhesives That Can Bond Solar Panels to Carbon Fiber Material

06/17/2014 8:34 AM

I have these flexible solar panels with tedlar polymer(tpt) backing and I would like to bond these panels to the roof of a vehicle that has been made from carbon fiber. Also since this whole system will be in open atmosphere, I would like to know the sealants that can bond such materials and also can withstand rainy as well as heat weathers. I have come across some silicone sealants that can stick tedlar based materials but I want to clear that will such silicone sealants adhere to carbon fiber as well, since once the sealant has been applied it might become difficult to remove the bond and the process will become messy.

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#1

Re: Adhesives That Can Bond Solar Panels to Carbon Fiber Material

06/17/2014 9:37 AM

I would do a test first, and I would use a screw down border strip all the way around...

http://www.jamestowndistributors.com/userportal/show_product.do?pid=64347&familyName=TotalBoat+Thixo+2%3A1+Epoxy+System

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#2

Re: Adhesives That Can Bond Solar Panels to Carbon Fiber Material

06/17/2014 12:25 PM

Silicones are a good choice. Flexible, water resistant, RELATIVELY easy to remove, if needed.

Depending on speed, a leading edge hold-down strip is a good idea also.

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#3

Re: Adhesives That Can Bond Solar Panels to Carbon Fiber Material

06/17/2014 11:18 PM

Refer to the "Handbook of Adhesives" by Irving Skeist. It is probably available at a county library of a city library. It goes very thoroughly through all the different types of adhesives. Use caution in deciding what adhesive to use. There are thousands of adhesives for all different types of substrates, and that's only the water based products The best thing to do would be to contact several or more adhesive and sealant manufacturers and talk to their tech lab or tech service personnel about your application. If one doesn't have a suitable product ask them for a lead on who might. They are very cooperative since they want the order for your next adhesive needs. Continue till you find the right one. Test it with your substrates and find out if it really does work. Try HB Fuller, Loctite, GE, Dap, Dow, and many others. Google "adhesive manufacturers" and "sealant manufacturers" and start with them. Your are going to find many more than you would ever imagined there are.

Unfortunately with adhesives when you use some formulations and it doesn't work your substrates are damaged and not reusable. Your results are going to be based on what is recommended, what passes your "tests", and finding the best for you. Even though I spent ten years in the adhesives industry, I know enough not to make recommendations. There are too many out there to know all or most of them. That's why I utilized our development lab personnel for all recommendations of glue formulations. They were the "glue guru's", not me.

Good Luck, Old Salt

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#4

Re: Adhesives That Can Bond Solar Panels to Carbon Fiber Material

06/18/2014 2:35 AM

Why not make it removable? Say some form of socket in each corner, with something up front to stop the air getting underneath it when moving.

That way if it needs repairing, or you simply want to use it elsewhere for a time you can.

There are literally dozens of methods to allow this.....

Gluing is too permanent for me personally I find, especially that a thief could do untold damage to the roof in a determined effort to steal the solar panels...

Think about it!!!

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#5

Re: Adhesives That Can Bond Solar Panels to Carbon Fiber Material

06/18/2014 4:51 PM

gc311-

A few months ago another participant had a similar question but with different substrates. I think my reply to him was a little better than my previous one for your question. I have put the essential parts of it below. Much of it is repetitive of my post above answer but I hope you can get more information from this one:

Unless you are going into commercial production with this proposed mixture, FORGET ABOUT IT! The adhesives field is so wide and so varied that it would be a "pin the tail on the donkey" project to develop this formulation. Besides that how many participants here have any more than "Elmer's Glue-all" experience? Not as many as you need. In the adhesives industry there are tens of thousands of formulas for thousands of types of applications.

Your first step should be to clearly define what the end use of the formula is. Next state the desired properties of it. What are the substrates, working time, clarity, color, initial tack, viscosity, flexibility, cure time, etc. Next go to a large library and read the applicable sections of Skeist's-- Handbook of Adhesives. It is the bible of adhesives.

Now is the most important part. Contact several of the numerous adhesives manufactures and ask them if they manufacture any formula to do the application you have and with as many of the properties that you have determined necessary. Talk to the technical services or development lab personnel. They are the ones who know the product line and their capabilities. If one manufacturer doesn't have any ask them who would. Adhesives are very competitive so they will honestly tell you so they have good customer relations for the next opportunity with you. Start with some such as Henkel, Masterbond, H B Fuller, Bostik, 3M, Glue-Fast in NYC, etc. Do a Google of "adhesives manufacturers" to get a very long list. When you find one who you think has the formula for you, ask for a sample. Do your test and follow up with them if it isn't the one or it is the best. If your needs do not meet their minimum ask them to refer you to a distributor.

I worked in the adhesives industry for over ten years. I learned enough to know that I know little about the formulas and their uses. This is the way to succeed in finding the right product. Contact the development and technical people!

Good Luck, Old Salt

Again, I hope this is of some help to you in your search.

Good Luck. Old Salt

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Andy Germany (1); lyn (1); old salt (2); SolarEagle (1)

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