5 Things You Need to Tell an RF Welding Professional for an Assessment

If you’re considering radio frequency welding services for your product, you should make sure it’s the right heat sealing process for you by taking it in for assessment at the hands of an RF welding expert.

To get an accurate assessment, there are certain details you should provide for an industry expert.

What is the Product’s Intended Function?medical RF welding

The very first thing you should tell an RF welding expert is the functionality of your product. What is it designed to do?

Radio frequency welding is strong, but if a product is intended to contain compressed air under high pressure over 30 psi, RF welding may not be the best sealing option. Heavier fabrics will need to be used for products designed to withstand abrasion as well, and a specific rating may be required for materials in certain industries with strict standards.

What is the Size of the Product?

Another important factor that will determine if your product is right for RF welding is the size of the product being welded. The larger the product, the more difficult it will be to successfully form a strong seal.

If your product is too large, it may require a much more extensive welding service than radio frequency welding.

What is the Configuration?

RF welding is designed to handle two-dimensional product configurations, whereas three-dimensional configurations may require more complex sealing methods, depending on the materials.

Make sure your product configurations are made with RF-sensitive materials such as vinyl prior to considering this service on three-dimensional products.

What is the Application?

The application of your product plays a huge part in determining whether or not RF welding is the appropriate sealing method. Again, this ties into the materials required by the specific industry in which the product will be used.

Are Any Drawings Available?

One last item that can significantly help with the RF welding process is a drawing or series of drawings that detail your product layout. This could help the expert decide on the best way to approach the RF welding process. CAD type drawings are the most ideal.

Many places accept other types of drawings as well, though, so CAD drawings aren’t always necessary. Some places accept DXF or DWG files, for example.

If you keep these five major factors in mind when considering radio frequency welding for your product, an expert will not only be able to determine whether the process is right for your product or not, but also be able to suggest another more suitable sealing process.

How Exactly Does Radio Frequency Sealing Work?

The radio frequency sealing process is not new, with manufacturers having used the process for over 60 years in order to create strong, durable products. However, in spite of its age, this technology is as reliable as it ever was. The process is also referred to as RF welding/sealing, dielectric sealing or high frequency welding.

How the Process Creates Strong Seals

Radio frequency sealing uses electromagnetic waves to heat two similar or dissimilar materials, which excites their polar molecules and causes them to rearrange, fusing together the two melted materials as heat is generated. The materials used in the process must have a polar molecular structure in order for it to work, which includes common plastics like polyurethane and PVC, as well as other polymers such as Nylon, EVA, PET and several ABS plastics.

rf-welding-press

The equipment involved in the process includes a table press and tooling dies. The two material surfaces are held on the table press that puts pressure on them. Then the electromagnetic waves travel through the narrow space between the die and table where sealing occurs. The combination of pressure and generated heat causes the materials to then melt and fuse together, forming a seal that is ultimately as strong or even stronger than the original materials.

The presence of a buffer is needed to facilitate the process, as it provides some electrical resistance to the radio frequency energy and prevents the process from putting holes in the material.

Fabricating Tough Plastic Products

Many industries rely on radio frequency sealing because of the strength of the bond the process creates. The medical, military and government industries use this process in many of their products, along with many other industries. Inflatable bladders for liquid containment and industrial curtain walls are simply a couple of the important products that use RF welding in their construction.