3M™ Glass Bubbles G18/500 are non-surface treated bubbles that are part of our Floated Product Series. These hollow glass microspheres have a crush strength of 500 psi and a true density of 0.18 g/cc – making them a strong, yet lightweight additive used in a number of applications, including aerospace, deep water syntactic foams and sporting goods.
What are 3M™ Glass Bubbles?
3M glass bubbles are engineered hollow glass microspheres made from water-resistant and chemically-stable soda-lime borosilicate glass. Like all 3M glass bubbles, our 3M™ G18/500 Glass Bubbles are water and oil resistant, making them suitable for use in a number of underwater applications. Additionally, they are non-combustible, low alkaline and non-porous, so they do not absorb resin; and their low alkalinity makes this product compatible with most resins while providing a stable viscosity and a long shelf life.
These low-density particles are used for many demanding applications across a wide range of industries to provide temperature and pressure resistance and reduce part weight. Importantly, our 3M™ Glass Bubbles G18/500 offer good strength-to-weight ratio, so you can reduce weight without compromising the mechanical integrity of the finished parts. For these reasons, 3M glass bubbles are a superior alternative to many conventional fillers and additives such as silica, calcium carbonate, talc and clay.
The spherical shape of 3M glass bubbles offers a number of important benefits, including: higher filler loading, lower viscosity/improved flow, and reduced shrinkage and warpage. It also helps the 3M glass bubbles blend readily into compounds and makes them adaptable to a variety of production processes, including spraying, casting and molding. In addition, they offer greater survivability under demanding processing conditions, such as injection molding and also produce stable voids, which results in low thermal conductivity and a low dielectric constant.
Floated Fly Line
3M™ Glass Bubbles G18/500 can be used in a variety of applications. One application is in sporting goods – such as floated fly line – where they can be used as a lightweight additive. Once added to the line during the production process, G18/500 glass bubbles helps the fly line remain light and buoyant. This is essential for fly fishing where the user requires a lightweight line that can easily be cast, yet remains strong throughout its use.