Since 1966, we’ve been making the world’s best high precision extruded, molded, and fabricated elastomeric goods. Everyone at Vanguard is committed to the highest quality and to a customer service that is second to none. In summary, our days are pretty full. Between engineering manufacturing, quality testing, and fielding orders and quotes, we really don’t have that much in the way of free time!
That being said, we want to take a quick break to spend some time asking you, our readers and customers, some pertinent questions. We know the capabilities of our rubber and silicone seals, gaskets, O-rings, and tubing from A to Z, but it’s always nice to know how these devices are being used in actual, in-development projects and applications. There’s always the chance that there are new, exciting uses for our products that we haven’t anticipated. On that note, it’s your turn to let us know how and why you’re using your Vanguard products, or at least the sorts of products that Vanguard specializes in. We’d also love to hear if there is any way we can improve our products and services; if there is any way we can become a better and more responsive company. We’re relying on you, the everyday users of our products, to fill us in on what we don’t know! In the end, we never want to stop growing and innovating, and a key component of that is being open to solid, intelligent feedback from the people you serve.
So leave a comment here on the blog, send us an email
, or just pick up the phone and give us a call
. We’ll enjoy hearing from you!
Three decades ago, solar energy usage on a broad scale to power large sections of the population seemed to be a pipe dream. Based upon the technology of the day, it was assumed that “direct conversion” solar cells could never be efficient enough to generate enough power to make their use commercially feasible on a large scale, and their costs made wide scale use unrealistic. Further, solar reflector, collector, and steam turbine technologies of the time were not advanced enough to warrant consideration for use in multi-megawatt power plants.
Over the past several years, the technological landscape has changed considerably with respect to solar energy. Direct conversion solar cells are becoming less costly to the point where many individual residential installations make economic sense. Further, reflector and turbine technology has now advanced to the point where it is now feasible to build solar power plants that can generate greater than 250 megawatts of power. Industrial sites that utilize steam power are now using solar collectors to augment their traditional steam generation, thus reducing their dependence on traditional fossil fuels or electricity.
From a materials and applications standpoint, these installations present some daunting challenges. The most effective solar installations are located in areas of intense solar radiation and wide temperature swings. Take for instance the largest solar installations in Asia and in Australia. These are located in areas where the average solar radiation can approach 7 kWh/square meter/day and the temperature can go from close to freezing all the way to well over 100F. Any material that is used in these systems must not only hold up to long periods of high heat and radiation without degradation, but must also be adaptable to the low temperature exposure as well. Further, the weather environment in these installation locations can be among the most brutal on earth, with weather phenomenons such as brutal sandstorms or torrential tropical rains.
To that effect, Vanguard Products has provided solar energy developers with high-quality silicone materials that can withstand the intense heat, wind, dust-storms, and UV radiation over the long haul, while providing consistent reliable sealing and fluid transport. Our ability to tailor our custom silicone extrusions
, moldings and tubing
from both the design and materials standpoint has made us a “supplier of choice” for these types of applications. Further, we are able to provide long term durable options with respect to mounting and installation, such as high performance pressure sensitive adhesive mounting. We are looking forward to continuing and growing our supply to this industry in the future in support of the global efforts to increase the use of renewable energy.