KIST and KITECH to Develop One-component Epoxy Adhesive
Dr. Park Min’s team from the Korea Institute of Science and Technology (KIST)’s Photo-electronic Hybrids Research Center developed a one-component epoxy adhesive that can be stably preserved, opening up the potential for domestic production.
This one-component epoxy adhesive was developed through a convergence research project launched in 2015 between KIST and the Korea Institute of Industrial Technology (KITECH). In the project’s current stage, KIST is leading the R&D on mounting technology.
Epoxy adhesive is used in a diverse range of industries, including the construction, automobile, and aerospace industries. According to the research firm MarketsandMarkets, the global market for epoxy adhesives was about 6 trillion KRW in 2015 and will likely grow an average of 6.63% per year until reaching 11.4 trillion KRW in 2026.
While normal epoxy adhesives contain an epoxy resin that differs from the hardening agent, one-component epoxy adhesives are ready-mixed and primarily used in cutting-edge industries. Until now, Korean manufacturers were unable to produce a one-component epoxy adhesive that hardened fast at low temperatures while remaining stably preserved, which is why they relied solely on imports.
Dr. Park’s team used mechanical-chemical processes to re-form the latent hardener’s surface in a way that led to the production of a one-component epoxy adhesive whose highly improved preservation stability did not prevent it from setting rapidly at low temperatures. Use of a solvent is not required, making it simpler, more economical, and more eco-friendly than conventional methods.
Next, the team will work to secure technology for synthesizing the latent hardener and enabling the one-component epoxy adhesive to be manufactured in Korea.
KITECH’s Dr. Choi Kyung Ho stated that the new latent hardener would “increase the productivity and technological competitiveness of Korean industries, especially in regard to cutting-edge products such as flexible displays and future vehicles, as well as more conventional products.”
The research was funded through KIST’s technology commercialization support program, and patent applications have been filed both in Korea and overseas, with a Korean patent having already been granted.