Intertronics recently assisted a sustainable fishing start up, SNTech, with the development of Pisces, a sophisticated kit of ten LED lights that fits onto fishing gear to enable more precise fishing. Pisces was rated to 20 bar to 30 bar pressure at a depth of around 250 metres, and SNTech’s team was developing a new model for use at 1,000 metres.
The device works by exploiting a natural behavioural response of fish – different colours of light will attract some species of fish, while scaring others away. The correct wavelength of light is essential to how the product functions, making optical clarity important for material selection. Because the potted resin would form part of the outer surface of the device, the material needed to be scratch resistant, UV resistant, capable of withstanding thermal shock, salt water, and more.
Following testing, the material that best met SNTech’s criteria was the optically clear Opti-tec 4210, a two-part, high hardness, room temperature curing polyurethane resin. Opti-tec 4210 has Shore D80 surface hardness and boasts excellent long-term UV stability for outdoor use due to the incorporation of UV stabilisers and antioxidants. The resin has high mechanical strength, and its low viscosity makes it easy to mix and process. Based on both the commercial and technical conversations with Intertronics, the team at SNTech chose to incorporate both Opti-tec 4210 and IRS 3071, a black polyurethane potting compound, into its design.
Choosing the right potting compounds for an application is a process. Intertronics comments: “Specifying an optical encapsulant or potting compound is a complex process, based on the environment, sector, and application your product will be supplied for. Considering your choice of optical encapsulant or potting compound early in the process, rather than later, can help increase the chances of the product passing the environmental testing and qualification phases. An experienced supplier can guide you through this process, helping you develop a reliable and repeatable process.”
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