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Living in a material world: Silicone for the aluminium sector in WA


The value of a material can be determined by the breadth of its application. Materials such as silicone can have unlimited problem-solving benefits, depending on how it is engineered, says Sinisa Petkovic, key account executive for CBC Malaga.

“Silicones make other materials workbetter,” says Sinisa. “They can fix broken products and make new products possible. Silicone has some unique properties about it that make it both synthetic and sustainable at the same time.”

Silicones combine silicon-based glass and carbon-based plastic. Sinisa points out that “like glass, silicones are temperature and moisture-resistant, chemically inert, and dielectric. As with plastics, silicones are strong and able to take on many forms.”

Importantly, silicone can be formulated as a sealant.

“Silicone can be formulated as an adhesive or a release agent, an antifoam or a foam stabiliser,” Sinisa explains. “There are so many applications that silicone can serve, and often these can be varied, or opposing applications.”

For the mining segment, Sinisa recommends DOWSIL 732 Multi-Purpose Sealant as an effective general purpose acetoxy RTV sealant.

“American company, Dow, are experts in material sciences. They have been investing in the innovation of silicones and developing the chemical compound of the material for some time,” says Sinisa.

“Dow’s DOWSIL 732 can adhere to styrene, copper, glass, nylon and steel, and has the option of aluminium metallic finish. It can withstand temperatures up to 177°C.”

While the DOWSIL 736 is similar to the 732, one of the key differences is that this product can handle temperatures up to 315°C.

“It is a general-purpose heat resistant sealant that we have sold huge quantities of to the aluminium industry in the Perth area,” Sinisa elaborates.

Central to the CBC Malaga location where Sinisa operates out of are some of the largest aluminium operations in the world, across the Darling Range, Kwinana, Pinjarra and Wagerup regions.

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