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All You Need to Know About Kapton® Flexible Heaters

Heating is an important process in both stagnant and dynamic applications. In fact, controlled and uniform heating is an integral process for many critical applications that require specific temperature ranges to ensure crucial analysis or delivery. This is where flexible heaters are used. Most of these are polyimide film heaters, which are also known throughout the industry as Kapton® heaters. Polyimide flexible heaters are low-profile, thin heating elements that Birk Manufacturing can customize with shaded watt densities or multiple zones so that customers receive the most optimal heating solution. While the heater’s low profile and flexibility are primary lures for those seeking a Kapton® heater, Birk’s ability to fully tailor its heaters and then adhere to or laminate to a multitude of shapes and sizes provides additional inducements for those seeking a heating solution. Kapton® heaters are excellent heating solutions that provide fast thermal cycling so that products can both heat up and cool down quickly. This post discusses the details of Kapton® heaters, their applications, and benefits.

About Kapton ® Flexible Heaters

Kapton® Film Heaters at Length

Kapton® flexible heaters offer accurate heating and can be bonded directly to heat sinks, thermal wells, chucks, and much more. This permanent bonding ensures fast and accurate heat transfer. The heaters can be integrated with assemblies such as fuses, sensors, probes, and other electronic devices to offer a full turnkey solution. Kapton®, originally developed by DuPont, is used in various types of the Kapton heaters that have varying temperature capacities and bonding systems. These include FEP Teflon adhesive, acrylic adhesive, and all-polyimide film heaters. FEP-bonded Kapton® and all-polyimide Kapton® have a temperature capability of 260°C (500°F), and acrylic-bonded Kapton® has a temperature capability of 120°C (250°F). Below are some benefits of choosing a Kapton® heater.

  • Kapton film heaters are water and chemical resistant.
  • They are resistant to vibration, radiation, and fungal growth.
  • They have an extremely fast cycling capability.
  • Shaded watt densities are available for even heat distribution.
  • They have amazing insulation properties with a dielectric strength of 197 kV/mm.
  • Dual voltage designs are available.
  • Due to the thin profile and versatile capabilities of the Kapton film, it is possible to heat objects with complex designs or small form factors.
  • Additional support is provided to the circuitry by etched foil heaters that are encapsulated between the two layers of the Kapton film.

Applications of Kapton Film Heaters

Kapton’s flexible design, uniform heating, and customizability are used in mission-critical or no-fail applications. Some of the industries where the critical application of Kapton® heaters are needed are noted below.

  • Birk’s Kapton® film heaters are engineered and implemented in some of the most important applications of defense and security industries. These applications keep our troops safe with ruggedized laptops, acquisition systems, and heated air handlers. These heaters also allow us to keep our airports safe with engineered solutions for bomb detection and mass spectrometry (drift tube–elevation) testing.
  • In the medical industry, Birk’s Kapton® film heaters can be found in incubators that help keep premature babies alive and sterilized heated medical tools that help reduce patient infections. Clinical labs and science research facilities also use these heaters due to their precise temperature control and extremely low tolerance capabilities, which allow biological specimens, blood samples, and the like to be preserved at body temperature.
  • Kapton® heaters can also be found in food machinery and commercial HVAC systems.
  • In aerospace, these heaters are found in applications in satellite devices that require docking capabilities in extreme temperatures. Aircrafts are outfitted with Birk’s Kapton heaters to eliminate frost build upon their wings and navigation electronics.

Are you looking for a reliable heating solution for your application? If so, ensure you purchase a Kapton foil heater from a reliable Kapton heater manufacturer and supplier. Birk Manufacturing is a reliable manufacturer and provider of thermal solutions that include Kapton polyimide film heaters.

For More Information: (860) 739-4170    sales@birkmfg.com

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