Silicones | Featured | Resins | Optics + Opt. Materials | Components | Mar 28, 2017

New High-Performance Optical Silicones from Dow Corning

Dow Corning Corporation is launching a new family of moldable optical silicones that give LED lighting designers and manufacturers greater freedom. Enabling innovative lighting designs and providing new solutions, these advanced materials are part of an award-winning, expanding portfolio of high-performance moldable optical silicones.

Dow Corning® MS-40XX Moldable Silicones provide next-generation solutions for optical parts and secondary lenses. These two-part silicone materials feature:
•    Comparatively high hardness and low surface tension
•    Smooth, low-tack, plastic-like surface
•    Optically clear, high light transmittance, with lower haze
•    High thermal stability
•    Better heat and UV resistance than optical plastics
•    Medium viscosity for injection molding
•    Lighter than glass

These silicones also:
•    Provide the opportunity for reduced cycle time due to reduction in scorch time
•    Meet UL-746C-f1/UL-94 certifications for outdoor applications
•    Complement the existing Dow Corning® MS-10XX Moldable Silicones family

Leading the way in this new family is Dow Corning® MS-4002 Moldable Silicone, which enables the molding of complex, finely detailed optical parts and secondary lenses.

Other Illuminating Innovations are in development for this family that will expand the line further and provide additional options in molding and optical properties as well as enable greater design freedom for next-generation lighting.

These moldable optical silicones remain relatively soft after injection molding, with high elongation capability for easy demolding of complicated parts, such as those designed with a combination of thick and thin areas (e.g., lens clusters). After demolding and post-curing, they reach their final mechanical properties and produce hard and tough optical parts. They show enhanced stability of optical performance upon high heat, high humidity and UV exposures, meeting the most demanding requirements for outdoor lighting applications.

Dow Corning’s new moldable silicones family provides excellent properties and secondary optics solutions for LED lamp/luminaire applications. They have curing speeds optimized for the injection molding process of silicone rubber, enabling the production of plastic-like, smooth-surface optics with comparatively high hardness and low surface friction. Their high light transmittance with low attenuation coefficient — combined with high Abbe number — enable lighting companies to design optics for luminaires with high lumen efficiency. High thermal stability ensures the retaining of high transparency — even in harsh environments.

Award-Winning Innovation:

The family of Dow Corning MS-40XX Moldable Silicones join the award-winning line of moldable optical silicones, which were honored with two LIGHTFAIR® International Innovation Awards® at the world’s largest annual architectural and commercial lighting trade show and conference. Specifically, Dow Corning beat 307 contenders to earn the prestigious Technical Innovation Award, described by LFI as one of its top honors for outstanding achievement in design and application. In addition, two products — Dow Corning® MS-1002 and Dow Corning® MS-1003 Moldable Silicones — beat 15 competitors to win Best Product in LIGHTFAIR’s Non-Luminous Components and Specialty Hardware category.

The Illuminating Difference:

Dow Corning creates proven, high-performance silicon-based materials that help designers create next-generation lighting. Dow Corning offers today’s LED industry unmatched experience and know-how for LED lamp and luminaire assembly. The company’s experts work alongside customers to test designs, recommend modifications and provide total solutions to challenges.

Dow Corning’s partnership network of molding and optical experts helps develop the best solutions for customers.

For lighting that is brighter, more energy efficient, aesthetically pleasing, and durable, the new moldable optical silicones from Dow Corning provide the freedom to explore unprecedented design and assembly ideas — allowing designers to move beyond traditional configurations to new and innovative shapes.

Learn more about silicone lighting solutions from Dow Corning. Have a question? Contact us today.

About Dow Corning:

Dow Corning (, a wholly owned subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Company, provides performance-enhancing solutions to serve the diverse needs of more than 25,000 customers worldwide. A global leader in silicones, silicon-based technology and innovation, Dow Corning offers more than 7,000 products and services via the company’s Dow Corning® and XIAMETER® brands. More than half of Dow Corning’s annual sales are outside the United States.