Products and Applications
The chart below shows the product portfolio of 3M™ Glass Bubbles ranked by their relative strengths and densities. As you can see by the black line, improvements in glass bubble crush strength were relatively incremental during their early development and were accompanied by corresponding increases in density.
In recent years, however, growing interest in glass bubbles as fillers for engineered thermoplastics has led to new advances in the technology (shown by the blue trend line). Today, 3M is able to increase glass bubble strength many times, without the corresponding increases in density.
3M glass bubbles most commonly used in resin system applications (in table format).
View all products in the 3M glass bubble portfolio.
There are hundreds of current and potential applications of glass bubbles that provide end user benefits that can include light-weighting, improved process throughput, improved dimensional stability and pigment extenders.
Current or potential applications include:
Automotive: A wide variety of injection-molded parts, such as gas tank floats, interior trim, console boxes, headlamp reflectors, rocker molding, sheet-molded composite panels and lightweight body sealants
Construction Materials: Lightweight spackling compound; architectural base coves; lightweight putty, caulks and sealants; epoxy mastics and artificial marble; lightweight hand-held tools; profile extruded window and door profiles
Consumer Applications: Returnable packaging, lightweight boots, fly fishing line, sporting goods and composite wood
Electronics: Lightweight casing for printers Marine:
Marine: Sealants, lavatories
Model Creation: Molding clays
Paints and Coatings: Interior and exterior paint, heat reflective paint, anti-condensation paints, industrial coatings, polyurethane coating for concrete towers