What is silicone tape? (with photos)

Silicone tape is an excellent addition to an emergency medical supply kit.

Silicone tape is a remarkable feat of chemical engineering that has resulted in a long-lasting, highly durable protective tape. Made from cured silicone rubber, silicone tape typically contains a thin layer of silicone gel to make the product self-fusing, which forms a permanent bond around whatever is applied. This quality has led to a number of alternative names for silicone tape, including self-amalgamating tape, self-curing tape, and silicone gel tape. Duct tape forms the bond when stretched and wrapped around an object, and depending on the specific brand and how it is used, it will self-melt within minutes or a few hours.

Silicone tape can be used to make a splint for an injury.

Another feature of this tape is the inclusion of polydimethylsiloxane in the gel, which contains zinc oxide. This material is added to act as a UV inhibitor. This means that the tape is resistant to ultraviolet radiation from natural sunlight, which often contributes to the degradation of ordinary tape. It is also resistant to other environmental factors, including the effects of ozone. In addition, silicone tape is designed to resist moisture as well as contact with solvents, fuels, acids and even weld spatter.

This tape also remains flexible in cold temperatures. More importantly, some types of silicone tape are heat resistant and flame retardant. This is accomplished by formulating the tape composition to allow it to conduct and disperse heat evenly, but remain non-combustible. This is obviously very desirable when using the tape in conditions where it may come into contact with excessive heat or an open flame.

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As you might expect, there are plenty of applications for using this tape. For example, silicone tape adaptations are used in the biomedical and pharmaceutical fields, where it performs a variety of functions. In clinical settings, it is used to adhere medical equipment to the body, such as catheters and prosthetic devices. Also, as this tape is unaffected by moisture and can adhere to many different surfaces, it can be reapplied. In some cases, it can even be cleaned and reused when appropriate.

Silicone tape is widely used in the aviation industry and the military, as well as boat rigging. It is extremely valuable as electrical tape for tying cables, as well as weatherproofing, insulating and sealing all types of electrical connections. This tape is also ideal to have on hand for emergency repairs, including using it to stop leaks in pipes, fix a car radiator, O-ring seals, or even serve as a temporary fan belt. By the way, this tape makes an excellent addition to an emergency medical supply kit, where it can be used to make a splint or to attach a bandage to a wound.

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