Setting up a new bonding process and need to establish the curing schedule or your production process is set but experiencing fiber movement and need to adjust curing temperature or time, here is a FOC TIP to validate your curing schedule:
Characterize the oven ports – If you thermally cure epoxy, you must characterize the oven ports. Note that you are not measuring the ambient temperature of the port; instead, you are measuring the temperature of the epoxy inside a connector.
Using a thermocouple probe potted in a ferrule is a great way to characterize oven ports, because this mimics the actual epoxy curing process for your product.
For example, let’s say your curing schedule is 100 degrees C for 10 minutes. That doesn’t mean you simply put a connector into a 100-degree oven for 10 minutes. The epoxy’s temperature is influenced by the mass of the connector, so it may take 2 or 3 minutes for the epoxy’s internal temperature to reach 100 degrees C. Your total curing time may be 12 minutes, not 10.
Additional resources from the FOC team include:
- Glossary, Acronyms, Military Specifications for Connectors: http://bit.ly/2a2EFn8
- Q&A Resource: email technical questions to AskFOC@focenter.com
- Contact FOC with questions at: (800) 473-4237 / 508-992-6464 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org
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