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Release agent

A release agent, also known as a de-moulding agent, "form oil", parting agent or form releaser, is a substance used in moulding and casting that aids in the separation of a mould from the material being moulded and reduces imperfections in the moulded surface. Substances used to aid in the separation of food from a cooking container after baking or roasting, such as fat or flour, can also be considered release agents.

In the concrete construction industry, form release agents prevent the adhesion of freshly placed concrete to the forming surface, usually plywood, overlaid plywood, steel or aluminum. In this application, there are two types of release agents available: barrier and reactive. Barrier release agents prevent adhesion by the development of a physical film or barrier between the forming surface and the concrete. Reactive release agents are chemically active and work by the process of a chemical reaction between the release agent and the free limes available in fresh concrete. A soapy film is created which prevents adhesion. Because it is a chemically reactive process, there is generally little to no residue or unreacted product left on the forming surface or concrete which provides for a cleaner process.

Chemically reactive form release agents were first developed in 1956 in the United States by Carl Linn. He formed the Nox-Crete Chemical Company in Omaha, Nebraska on the basis of this product. The production of Nox-Crete Form Coating as the world's first chemically active form release agent gave contractors a cleaner option than the diesel fuel, crank shaft oils, etc. that had been used previously. Through the years, a number of other chemical manufacturers have also developed their own versions of the chemically active form release agent and it is now possible to find formulations designed specifically for certain performance requirements or forming surfaces. The Nox-Crete Chemical Company is now called the Nox-Crete Products Group and they also continue to manufacture form release agents, including the original Nox-Crete Form Coating.

As the world has become more interested in the health and safety of workers and our impact on our environment, manufacturers of form release agents have looked for new ways to formulate their products without a loss of performance. Leading manufacturers in the development of new technologies in this area have focused largely on water based formulations and the movement has been away from petroleum or solvent based products.

See also

Water Based Release Agents [1]

Why Water [2]

  • How Release Agents Work
This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Release_agent". A list of authors is available in Wikipedia.
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