Fairmont Industries’ Blog

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UV Radiation

Everyone is exposed to ultraviolet (UV) radiation from the sun and other artificial sources used in industry, commerce and recreation. Emissions from the sun include light, heat and UV radiation. The sun is the strongest source of UV radiation in our environment. Small amounts of UV radiation are essential for the production of vitamin D in humans. However, over-exposure to it may lead to short and long term adverse effects on the skin, eyes and immune system.

 

UV radiation is electromagnetic radiation, with wavelengths between 100-400 nm. It is divided into three bands :

 

 

As sunlight passes through the atmosphere, all UVS and about 90% of UVB is absorbed by ozone, water vapour, oxygen and carbon dioxide. UVA is not filtered as significantly by the atmosphere. Therefore, the UV radiation reaching the Earth’s surfacee is largely composed of UVA with a smaller amount of UVB component.

 

UV Radiation levels are influenced by:

SUN ELEVATION

The higher the sun in the sky, the higher the UV radiation level. Thus UV radiation levels vary with time of the day and time of year.

LATITUDE

The closer to the equator, the UV radiation level is higher. Closer to the equator, the sun’s rays have a shorter distance to travel through the atmosphere and therefore less radiation can be absorbed.

CLOUD COVER

UV radiation levels are highest under cloudless skies. However, light or thin clouds have little effect in reducing exposure and may even enhance UV levels because of scattering.

ALTITUDE

The higher the altitude, the UV radiation level is higher. There is less atmosphere available in higher altitudes to absorb the radiation. With every 1000m increase in altitude, UV radiation levels increase by around 10%.

OZONE

Ozone in the stratosphere absorbs some of the UV radiation that would otherwise reach the Earth’s surface. Ozone levels vary over the year and even across the day.

GROUND REFLECTION

UV radiation is reflected or scattered to varying extents by different surfaces, e.g. fresh snow can reflect as much as 80% of UV radiation, dry beach sand about 15% and sea foam about 25%.

 

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UV Degradation of EPDM Wet-pour

What is ultra violet?

Ultraviolet (“UV”) light is one of the frequencies of light that is given off by the sun. Ultraviolet light is not visible to the human eye; it is an invisible part of the “electromagnetic spectrum”. Ultraviolet radiation, visible light and infrared energy are all given off by the sun. The image below shows the electromagnetic spectrum, which includes ultraviolet, infrared and visible light along with other types of energy.

 

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UV Degradation of EPDM Wet-pour

UV Degradation

Some colors of wet pour surfacing are more prone to higher levels of degradation from UV (ultraviolet) light exposure. This means that certain colors in the manufacturing process of the rubber can fade over time because they have been exposed to ultra violet radiation from the sun. Generally speaking, the brighter colors are more prone to UV Degradation and during this process the sunlight radiation attacks the synthetic polymeric within the EPDM material, leading to a loss of the original vibrant color.

 


 

 

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Pigments

Definition of Pigments

Pigments are generally coloured, organic or inorganic solid powder, and usually are insoluble. They are not affected physically or chemically in the substrate in which they are incorporated. Pigments can give a full range of colours.

 

Types of pigments

Inorganic Pigments: Those pigments that are made up of mineral compounds are known to be Inorganic Pigments. These minerals are mainly oxides, sulphides of one or more metals.

Organic Pigments: In organic pigments, the molecules are made of carbon atoms along with hydrogen, nitrogen or oxygen atoms. Organic pigments are carbon based and are often made from petroleum compounds

 

The Differences between Organic and Inorganic Pigments

Particulars

Inorganic pigments

Organic pigments

Source

Minerals Chemically refined oil

Color

Often dull

Bright

Opacity Opaque

Transparent

Light fastness

Very good Vary from poor to good

Dyeing/Coloring Strength

Low

High

Cost Moderate

Mostly too expensive

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Colors

 

Color is simply defined as the light of different wavelengths and frequencies. Light, however, is just one form of energy that we can actually see that is made up of photons.

Colour comes from light. We can see even main colours of the Visible Spectrum. The retinas in our eyes though have three types of colour receptors in the form of cones, we can actually only detect three of these visible colours – red, blue and green. These colours are called additive primaries. It is these three colours that are mixed in our brain to create all of the other colours we see. The wavelength and frequency of light also influences the colour we see. The seven colours of the spectrum all have varying wavelengths and frequencies. Red is at the lower end of the spectrum and has a higher wavelength but lower frequency than that of violet at the top end of the spectrum which has a lower wavelength and higher frequency. To physically see this, we need a prism. When light from the sun passes through a prism, the light is split into the seven visible colours by refraction. Refraction is caused by the change in speed experienced by a wave of light when it changes medium.

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About Wet-pour Rubber Surfacing

For appropriate surfacing, it is important to consider safety as well as environmental friendliness. Wet pour surfacing is designed to provide maximum safety precautions with high longevity. We offer one of the best wet-pour surfaces for all project types. Our wet pour surface installation is both cost effective and guarantees durability for any site including sports courts, playgrounds, schools, splash parks and more.

What is Wet Pour Rubber Surfacing

A wet pour surface is a blended mix of polyurethane binders and rubber granules, usually manufactured on site. According to NBS specification of wet pour surfacing, there must be two layers: an SBR (Styrene Butadene Rubber) base layer and an EPDM (Ethylene Propylene Diene Monomer) surface. The SBR base layer acts as a shock-absorber while the outer EPDM layer is environmental friendly and has several variations in colour and design. We have a wide range of designs and bright colours that will fit well on different locations including schools, playgrounds, and parks.

Suitability of site

Wet pour materials take a very short time to cure, so it is important that we have our mixing plants as close to the site a possible. If the site surface is hard enough (like concrete, tarmac, etc…), then we can add install the wet pour surface on top of it.

However, for a smoother surface, we recommend a complete removal of the surface to give room for an appropriate SBR base layer. In sites where the surface shows no sign of a hard base, we’ll still level out the whole site at a minimum 150mm depth for the foundation.

As a rule of thumb, it is important to determine the life expectancy of the hard subsurface layer. Installing a wet pour surface on a poor base surface will only lead to repair expenses.

Maintenance

As the rubber safety flooring is made of porous materials, it’s important to keep the tiny spaces free from dirt. This is especially important to allow incoming water to run through the surface rather than clogging on the playground, compromising safety. Here are other procedures that ought t be followed during maintenance of wet pour surfaces:

– Keeping the surface clean

As mentioned earlier, the wet pour surface should be clean to avoid the surface otting down’ and forming a drainage-inhibiting layer. If the layer forms, algae, moss, and other weeds may find a habitat to develop. Regular cleaning by light power washing followed by scrubbing should be enough to remove debris and other forms of pollution from the surface.

– Removing tough stains

Stains are easily removable using hot water (avoid boiling water) and a cleaning detergent/liquid. Oil marks and like stains could be removed with a piece of cloth and methylated spirits. Chewing gum could also be removed using an aerosol freezer.

Snow and Ice

As much as snow and ice may not harm a wet pour surface, it is important to regularly scrap them off. Rubber edged scrapes or brushes are ideal tools for removal. Metal shovels and scrapers may distort the surface. Solvent-based de-icers should also not be permitted.

We recommend that you carry out proper servicing routines to ensure the surface maintains its top condition. It is important to make sure the surface is safe at all times. If you encounter tears and rips, work on it as soon as possible to prevent further damage.

After the playground safety surfacing, we also offer wet pour surface maintenance services. We have products that will keep the surface at its best, even when kids are playing all through. Contact us for more information on repair and maintenance.

Advantages of Using Rubber Wet Pour Surfacing

Wet pour surfaces are increasingly becoming popular due to their potential to reduce injuries, for instance in playgrounds. Depending on the depth and nature of the site, this type of flooring provides a safe and entertaining environment. Here are the main advantages of using wet pour rubber.

Wet Pour Rubber is Great for Uneven Surfaces

Wet pour rubber is suitable in uneven surfaces and can also be applied in flat surfaces, sloped areas or other bumpy terrains as well. Wet pour surfacing can even be installed at the bases of trees to provide a safer playground for kids.

Wet Pour Rubber is Weather-proof

Wet pour surfaces endures through all kinds of weather, whether it is stormy, sunny, or windy, its able to host all activities without any risk of wear and tear. Since the surfaces are highly durable, there is no need of repair or enforcement in the long run. Children can continue playing after a rainy period since wet pour surfaces do not get slippery when wet. The surface is also crack proof and drastic weather changes will not disintegrate the surface.

Thickness

We install wet pour surface depending on the client’s requirements in terms of space and design. Clients have the freedom to choose how thick the wet pour surface should be. How thick the surface will be depends on the type of equipment to be installed and the nature of the site.

Customizable

Another great benefit of wet pour surfacing is the wide range of design and colour specifications. You can choose from the various colours and blend with your kid’s playground, or gymnasium. Surfacing also has several designs to choose from, allowing you to work on the aesthetics of your project. Such designs that may be used in school playgrounds include:

– Educational activities

– Footprints

– Cartoon characters

– Number and letter grids

– Hopscotch

– Roadways etc…

These educational graphics are particularly important in school playground surfaces as they allow children to work on skills learnt in classes.

Conclusion

As experts in wet pour rubber supplies, we have completed several projects within the country and abroad. Our services are well inspected and meet BS EN standards that predetermine the relative depths of base surfacing for different heights of play equipment.

Feel free to get in touch and one of our staff members will get back to you with a product catalogue. You can also browse through our website to find out more on the array of products we have in store.