SOLUTIONS IN LATEX FOAM LATEXFOAM TECHNOLOGY

History of latex foam

Natural latex is the “liquid milk” tapped from the rubber tree Hevea Brasiliensis. Its main cultivation areas in Asia are responsible for more then 90% of the world natural rubber production of 12.314 thousand metric tons (2015) of which liquid latex has only a small share of about 10%. After gathering the liquid latex in the plantations it is concentrated and preserved with some ammonia and TMTD/ZnO. This standardized LA-latex (low-ammonia latex) is the basis for dipping products such as condoms, balloons and gloves but also for latex foam goods such as mattress cores and pillows.
John Boyd Dunlop
SOLUTIONS IN LATEX FOAM LATEXFOAM TECHNOLOGY
In 1887, John Boyd DUNLOP (1840 –1921), born in Scotland, developed the first practical pneumatic or inflatable tire for his son's tricycle, tested it and patented it on December 7, 1888. Even two years later his patent becomes officially invalid because the Scottish inventor Robert William Thomson (1822 - 1873) had patented the same idea already in GB, France (1846) and in the US (1847), DUNLOP from now on was the eponym for this vulcanization process. In 1928 DUNLOP technicians in Hanau (Germany) established the first standardized method for foaming latex. Other sources claims that the first latex foam mattress was produced 1929 at DUNLOPILLO in Great Britain. This “DUNLOP process” for vulcanizing latex foam for mattresses and pillows did not change significantly since these early days. Some chemicals has been replaced cause of small developments but the fundamental chemical process, the cross-linking of rubber molecules with sulphur, is still the same.
In short the latex compound is mixed up (foamed) with air, transferred into a metal mould (made of steel and/or aluminium) with hundred of pins and heated (vulcanized) in a steam chamber or tunnel. The distances between the pins and their numbers are defined by the fact of the slow heat transfer which is an indirect one: The saturated steam in the vulcanizing chamber initially transfers the heat to the surface of the mould and from there the energy is moving slowly inside the foam through the pins until the foam inside is reaching the required vulcanizing temperature of about 100°C. Looking deeper into the facts for a US Queen Size mattress with 60 in × 80 inch:
The dry volume of such a mattress (pins are not taken into consideration here) is about 460 litres. At an average density of 130 grams per litre (wet foam) the weight of latex is ab. 60 kg only. The rest (400 litres) is simply air which unfortunately is working as an insulator and poorly heatable. For such a mattress core a vulcanization time up to one hour is not uncommon. The weight of such a metal mould could sum up to 1.200 kg! Thus more than one ton of metal is heated up to vulcanize just only 60 kg of wet latex foam and it is obvious that such a production system needs a very heavy support structure. Also it is evidently that such a system is inflexible and slow in regards in general handling like mould opening, closing and exchange. Now you may want to know what‘s different in my process ? Please read more at TECHNOLOGY
Natural latex is the “liquid milk” tapped from the rubber tree Hevea Brasiliensis. Its main cultivation areas in Asia are responsible for more then 90% of the world natural rubber production of 12.314 thousand metric tons (2015) of which liquid latex has only a small share of about 10%. After gathering the liquid latex in the plantations it is concentrated and preserved with some ammonia and TMTD/ZnO. This standardized LA-latex (low-ammonia latex) is the basis for dipping products such as condoms, balloons and gloves but also for latex foam goods such as mattress cores and pillows.
Natural latex is the “liquid milk” tapped from the rubber tree Hevea Brasiliensis. Its main cultivation areas in Asia are responsible for more then 90% of the world natural rubber production of 12.314 thousand metric tons (2015) of which liquid latex has only a small share of about 10%. After gathering the liquid latex in the plantations it is concentrated and preserved with some ammonia and TMTD/ZnO. This standardized LA- latex (low-ammonia latex) is the basis for dipping products such as condoms, balloons and gloves but also for latex foam goods such as mattress cores and pillows.
SOLUTIONS IN LATEX FOAM LATEXFOAM TECHNOLOGY
John Boyd Dunlop

History of latex foam