Optibor® Boric Acids are a pure, multifunctional source of boric oxide (B2O3). Apart from borax pentahydrate, they are the most widely used industrial borate.
Optibor® Boric Acids (H3BO3) are theoretically composed of boric oxide and water. Crystalline in composition, white in appearance, they can be used as granules or as a powder. Both forms are stable under normal conditions, free-flowing, and easily handled by means of air or mechanical conveying. In solution, they are mildly acidic. Request a sample.
Applications & Benefits
NF Granular – Americas
NF Powder – Americas
SQ Granular – Americas & Asia Pacific
EP Granular – EMEAI
EP Powder – EMEAI
RG – EMEAI
SQ Granular – North America
Glass and glass fiber
B2O3 is both a flux and a network former; it assists the melt and influences the final product properties. In fiber glass, for example, it reduces melting temperatures and helps the fiberizing process. Generally, B2O3 lowers viscosity, controls thermal expansion, inhibits devitrification, increases durability and chemical resistance, and reduces susceptibility to mechanical or thermal shock.
Optibor® Boric Acids may be used in combination with a sodium borate (borax pentahydrate or anhydrous borax) in order to adjust the sodium to boron ratio in glasses which require low sodium levels. This is important in borosilicate glass where B2O3 provides essential fluxing properties at low sodium and high alumina levels.
Frits, glazes, and enamels
For the glassy surfaces of ceramics and enamels boric oxide acts as both network former and flux. It initiates glass formation (at low temperatures), ensures ‘thermal fit’ between glaze and body, reduces viscosity and surface tension, increases refractive index, enhances strength, durability and scratch resistance, and facilitates lead-free formulations. High boron frits mature rapidly, improve the speed at which smooth, even glaze surfaces develop, and provide good bases for coloring oxides.
Optibor® Boric Acids are used as the B2O3 source in the formulation of fast fire frits for tiles because of their requirement for low sodium levels.
Incorporated into cellulose materials, borates change the oxidation reactions and promote the formation of ‘char’, thereby inhibiting combustion. Optibor® Boric Acids, alone or in combination with borax, are particularly effective in reducing the flammability of cellulose insulation, wood composites, and the cotton batting used in mattresses.
Optibor® Boric Acids prevent the oxidation of metal surfaces in welding, brazing, or soldering. They are also used as a source of boron for strengthening metal alloys and steel.
Optibor® Boric Acids are incorporated in many aqueous and non-aqueous systems requiring corrosion inhibition, lubrication or thermal oxidative stabilization.Optibor® Boric Acids find use in the manufacture of lubricants, brake fluids, metalworking fluids, water treatment chemicals, and fuel additives.
As part of the starch adhesive formulation for corrugated paper and paperboard, and as a peptizing agent in the manufacture of casein-based and dextrin-based adhesives, Optibor® Boric Acids greatly improve the tack and green strength of the adhesive by crosslinking conjugated hydroxyl groups.
Personal care products
NF grade Optibor® Boric Acid finds applications in cosmetics, toiletries and pharmaceuticals. It is used in conjunction with sodium borates for pH buffering, and as a crosslinking agent to emulsify waxes and other paraffins.
Being a highly effective absorber of thermal neutrons, the boron-10 isotope is essential to the safety and control systems of nuclear power stations. Optibor® SQ Boric Acid is made for the nuclear industry, and can be isotopically enriched to increase the available proportion of boron-10.
In the manufacturing of nylon intermediates,Optibor® Boric Acids catalyzes the oxidation of hydrocarbons and increases the yield of alcohols by forming esters that prevent further oxidation of hydroxyl groups to ketones and carboxylic acids.
They are also used in preparing various important industrial products such as boron halides, borohydride, fluoborates, metallic borates, borate esters, and boron containing ceramics.
Some other applications:
Leather processing and finishing
Textile finishing Paints
Senior Development SpecialistFred Ascherl
Fred has worked for Rio Tinto Borates for over 37 years. He currently holds a position as a Senior Development Specialist.
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Borates in borosilicate glass >