The Glue Talk Blog


Adhesive technology for tapes. Simply clever performance.

Posted 14 Jan 2019 by Melanie Lack, Business Development Manager, Tapes and Labels

Tapes provide a simple and efficient way to connect all sorts of different materials in many day-to-day applications, from vehicles to electronic goods, and from medical devices to windows. Whilst the bonding solution may appear simple, the adhesive technology underpinning its performance is often much more sophisticated. This is where tape manufacturers can really benefit from accessing the resources of an adhesive partner with the widest breadth of expertise in adhesive technology.
More applications, more tape
The variety of tape solutions we rely on is growing, which plays a significant role in the ongoing expansion of the tape market. From holding together our smartphones to providing the finishing touches for our cars and homes, industrial tapes are fast becoming the go-to solution for clean and accurate bonding. Consequently, the tape market is growing and, by 2020, is predicted to be worth nearly USD $54 million and growing at a rate of 5.51 percent  – good news for both global tape manufacturers and smaller, niche players.
The upturn in demand for tape solutions is being driven from a variety of sectors, all taking advantage of the benefits the technology offers. For example, in the automotive industry, new substrate materials for lighter-weight vehicles is just one of the factors that has moved manufacturing methods away from more traditional welding. The use of tape solutions is often more accurate, efficient and stronger, as well as being safer for the worker. Similarly, the construction industry is using tapes on windows and doors because they create an efficient bond that insulates and optimizes the environmental performance of buildings. Another growing sector for tapes is healthcare, which requires different bonding and performance characteristics for different applications, including creating skin-friendly temporary bonds to attach medical equipment to patients. 
Adhesive technology in action 
H.B. Fuller offers a range of solutions to address these requirements, including Swift®melt 2033, which is a high-performance, hot melt adhesive used by tape manufacturers on double-sided applications. Swift®melt 2033 has been formulated with impressive temperature resistance of up to 95°C. This makes it suitable for interior automotive applications,  which often stipulate 80°C temperature tolerance. Plus, it has good shear resistance, making it a great choice for mirror tapes.
This is just one product and one technology with a few performance characteristics highlighted here. However, the breadth of industrial applications is extensive, as are the performance demands adhesive technology is able to meet. 
Diverse applications, diverse technology
On the outside, tapes may look quite similar, but the diversity of industrial applications alone requires tape manufacturers to utilize a wide variety of adhesive technologies. At H.B. Fuller, we have the advantage of offering customers a complete range of adhesives for all types of tapes. This covers four key technology areas, including tried-and-tested, solvent-based, acrylic products and rubber-based hot melts. 
Our global R&D facilities provide the expertise and intelligence needed for tape manufacturers of all sizes to develop products that deliver specialist performance characteristics for their particular application. This helps our customers stand out in a competitive, growing market. Access to H.B. Fuller’s innovators is particularly valuable to smaller businesses and niche players, who may not be able to invest in the R&D needed to deliver competitive specialist product performance.
Visit us at ICE Europe 2019 to connect with our extensive adhesive expertise and drive your tape performance forward. 



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