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Alaglas Swimming Pools has now begun using AOC’s EcoTek “green” resin as an option to environmentally-conscious customers wishing to purchase its composite pools.
Alaglas started using EcoTek H460-EKAG polyester for the structural segment of its composite pools. Unlike most thermoset resins, which are typically made from unsustainable petrochemical feedstocks, 28 per cent of EcoTek H460-EKAG resin is said to be derived from biologically renewable resources and/or recycled materials.
AOC say that the mechanical properties of EcoTek H460-EKAG are equal to or better than those of a conventional resin designed for open-moulded products such as swimming pools. As a result, Alaglas pools made with green resin technology are durable enough to be sold with the same 50-year structural warranty that has been offered with pools made with traditional resin.
“This resin makes us a better environmental steward and enhances the pool’s appeal to customers looking to make greener lifestyle decisions,” said Monty Felix, CEO of Alaglas. “The same manufacturing process techniques and equipment were used to seamlessly incorporate the new green resin into our material system,” he continued. “We didn’t have to change a thing. Resin conversion was a simple matter of moving our suction wand out of one drum and into another.”
Made with EcoTek
Alaglas pool construction begins with a sprayed-on, moisture-resistant gel coat that is backed up with a layer of chopped glass fibres in a Hydropel H010 vinyl ester. This elite marine grade resin from AOC forms a high performance barrier against moisture intrusion that can cause blisters on the gel coat surface.
After barrier coat application, EcoTek H460-EKAG resin is used to wet out the reinforcing glass fibres in three manufacturing steps that create an engineered structural laminate: 1) spray up of chopped glass fibres and resin, 2) lay up of resin-impregnated stitched fabric that combines biaxial woven fibreglass cloth with multidirectional strand mat, and 3) another sprayed-up layer of chopped fibres and resin.
“The special stitched mat gives us a higher glass-to-resin ratio,” Felix stated. “The higher fibre content, the strength distribution of the fabric’s fibre architecture, and the EcoTek resin’s low air entrapment synergize to deliver high structural integrity. Our pools are so strong enough to meet some customers’ preference for aboveground installation.”
An Award-Winning Product
This year, the American Composites Manufacturing Association (ACMA) recognised Alaglas at the annual ACE Competition, awarding the company the 2010 Superior Quality in an Open Moulded Part award. The award is presented to the open-mould-manufactured application that best demonstrates exceptional fit, finish and quality.
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