Surface Treatment


(Courtesy The ChemQuest Group )

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Introduction

For effective bonding, the adhesive must completely wet the surface of each substrate being joined together. In addition, strong attractive interactions must form between the adhesive and the substrates. To satisfy these conditions, the surface of the substrate must be clean, reasonably smooth, and chemically receptive to the chosen adhesive. Surface treatment is the process whereby the adherend surface is cleaned and/or chemically treated to promote better adhesion.

To a large extent the surface treatment determines how well and for how long a bond will hold (see Figure 1). If the chosen adhesive can withstand the service conditions to which the bond will be subjected, then the life and service expectancy of that bond will be directly proportional to the degree of surface treatment

Figure 1. The effect of surface treatment on overlap shear strength (epoxy adhesive)