Ecological glue: the future is green, even in the world of ceramics

The attention to the environment is one of the main objectives for the future of Sicer. In this historical moment in which the world requires companies to be protagonists in regenerating society and the planet, the Digital R&D Lab of Sicer proposes a generation of digital glues . LE LOW EMISSION, eco-solvent based and a new series of water-based digital glues, completely odorless and low emission.

Lotta cambiamento climatico

In these times, when polluting emissions worldwide show no sign of decreasing and natural resources are consumed at a rate that is no longer sustainable, it is essential to become aware of our environmental impact and of the fact that each of us has the responsibility to implement small or large changes that are in our daily lives to build a greener future

In this article, we will talk about our response to the fight against climate change.

Sicer’s commitment to a sustainable future: ecological digital glues

Investments aimed at reducing environmental impacts are examples of activities that Sicer, the historic manufacturer and supplier of raw materials for ceramic companies of Ubersetto, considers as the backbone of its core business. From this two important series of natural glues are born: ecological glues . LOW EMISSION, eco-solvent based and ecological water-based glues, completely odorless and low emission. Two products that integrate sustainability and high performance.

How is Sicer’s low emission ecological glue made and what are its characteristics?  

Sicer’s ecological glue SCD1990LE, based on low emission materials, has been developed to meet the needs of ceramic companies to be able to apply large quantities of glue digitally and then deposit the dry grit thus obtaining aesthetic results not achievable with other production processes.

SCD1990LE has been developed by selecting a series of organic solvents and dispersants which, compared to the fatty acid esters materials normally used in the formulation of inks and digital effects, minimize emissions from ceramic chimneys after firing. Among the emissive parameters used for the selection of materials, Sicer has focused mainly on:

  • Total SOV emitted, expressed as total Organic Carbon (COT), measured with a portable FID;
  • Odorous compounds, evaluated by specialized laboratories on samples taken from the chimney in special bags;
  • Total aldehydes, with particular attention to formaldehyde, classified as carcinogenic, quantified by GC-MS analysis thanks to the support of external specialized laboratories.

Following this study, solvents and dispersants have been identified and subsequently patented and used later for the production of Low Emission glue SCD1990LE. These organic materials have also been recently optimized to drastically reduce the odor in the digital printer booth, in the indoor ceramic environment, where digital printer workers work.

Also the inorganic flux contained in the glue and the percentage quantity introduced in the formula have been the subject of in-depth studies, aimed especially at maximizing the performance of the glue in application, ensuring the perfect laying and transparency of the applied grit, avoiding the release in the oven and finally ensuring a perfect quality of printing by the digital bars on which the glue is loaded.

The presence of a quantity of material inside the glue contributes to further lower the organic load introduced in the oven and consequently the quantity of SOV and odorous compounds emitted after cooking.

Colla ecologica

To achieve excellent performance in application, the production process has also been subject to a long period of optimization and tuning in our factory in Torriana.

This long process of fine tuning has allowed the implementation of the production plant with special mills for subsequent grinding carried out in series that give the glue a good stability of the suspension over time and perfect filtration, which avoids frequent filter replacements on machines or expensive head washes for end users.  

High and low temperature ecological glue: what are the differences?

The SCD1990LE glue, based on material, has optimal performance in high temperature cycles, which guarantee a perfect fusion of the inorganic material contained in it and consequently of the glass above. It is able to work with excellent results both in full field applications for lapped products and in graphic applications, on products sold directly at oven outlets without subsequent lapping or brushing operations.

However, this glue is not suitable for use on low temperature production cycles. For this reason, Sicer laboratories have developed SCD1995LE glue, formulated using the same range of organic solvents and hyperdispersants selected by LE research, but without flux. It is a glue that combines the reduction of chimney emissions to the use on coating products or on projects that require the deposition of glue and matt grit according to a very precise graphic.

However, compared to SCD1990LE melting glue, SCD1995LE glue, like all matter-free digital glues, has a slightly higher organic load, most frequently causes the release of grit and it is not equally performing in ensuring the perfect application and transparency of the glass. 

To achieve the same aesthetic performance as the SCD1990LE, SCD1995LE glue requires a careful tuning of the glaze or smaltobbio below.

Both high and low temperature glues guarantee excellent printing and lubrication performance on digital bars and thanks to the recently applied formula improvements they allow to work without problems even on short lines with high condensation.

Advantages and applications of ecological glue

Compared to a traditional glue based on fatty acid esters, the two glues CD1990LE and SCD1995LE have now equalized performance, as they have achieved the same lubrication and the same resistance to aqueous condensates, always  resent on the ceramic production lines.

Sicer guarantees to all customers who want to load digital glue . LE on their  ceramic printers daily technical assistance, thanks to a trained and highly qualified team. In addition, it provides the customer with a manual with all the guidelines for working with series products. LE without any problem on the digital machine and in production, drawn up with the support and advice of plant designers. Both glues are homologated by the main suppliers of digital printers in the ceramic industry and can be loaded into the bar with waveforms specifically developed to optimize the discharge and print quality in different production conditions.

The organic materials used by Sicer for the production of these glues do not have any type of dangerous labeling and are produced at zero VOC.

Sicer water-based digital glues: SCD3001H and SCD3005H  

The latest born in Sicer are the water-based glues: the natural glue SCD3001H, containing flux and the natural glue SCD3005H, without flux.  Totally odorless and low emission, with a high adhesive power, they contain extremely high performance technical characteristics:

Colla base acqua
  1. Thanks to the water-based formula and hydro-compatible materials, SCD3001H and SCD3005H greatly lower the emissions of COT, SOV, aldehydes and odorous substances from the chimneys of ceramic ovens, making them minimal.
  2. The use of ecological glues SCD3001H and SCD3005H allows the production on different lines in the same plant without exceeding the limit values of COT and aldehydes at the fireplace.
  3. The glue SCD3001H contains a melting agent that increases the adhesive power, improves the application of grit, helps to waterproof the support before the application of glass and further reduces the emission of SOV to the chimney.
  4. They guarantee longer drying times than common solvent-based glues.

Environment: we all do our part!

ECO GREEN formula, minimum emissions, excellent definition and uncompromising performance: these are the advantages for those who choose the ecological glues developed by Sicer laboratories.

Each of us with our own behaviors and lifestyle has an impact on the environment. At Sicer we make sustainability one of our main values and we work hard to improve every day. For this reason, as a company we adopt consistent and constant changes and produce “eco-friendly” products. The laboratories of Ubersetto’s manufacturer and supplier of raw materials for ceramic companies are developing a new complete series of water-based digital materials. These products do not represent a goal, but a starting point towards an even deeper sustainability.

The Earth does not wait and belongs to everyone: let us do our part!

Sicer, on the side of Nature.

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