Expansion Joints and Pre-Compressed Sealants
Research and Development
Active and completed R&D projects include:
Design of Experiment (DOE) to
simultaneously study and evaluate multiple variables in open cell foams
considered as possible key contributors to achieving watertightness and
other critical performance requirements.
Exploration of alternative chemicals for
enhancement of watertightness in impregnated foam sealants.
Comparison of compression set
characteristics of varieties of closed versus open cell foams under
simulated achievable field conditions.
Comparison of tendency to bleed in wax,
asphalt, or other chemicals compared to acrylic based and other alternative impregnation
chemistries under simulated field conditions.
Analysis of ability of silicone-coated, high-movement
hybrids to handle racking (shear) and other movements.
Comparison of force to compress as well as
active backpressure of impregnated versus saturated open-cell foam alternatives.
Development of an improved system for
bridging and sealing large and seismic expansion joints.
Development of an improved system for
joint-face-adhered treatment of horizontal-plane expansion joints.
Development of non-chlorine based fire
retardants for incorporation into impregnated foam sealants.
Development of improved extrusions for
blockout-mounted deck expansion joints to eliminate flange-wave and to
enhance labyrinth sealing.
Validation of hybrid sealants ability to
withstand extreme hurricane-strength wind forces.
Development of improved mounting adhesives
for assembly-line processing OEM applications.
Finite Element Analysis (FEA) of the
stresses induced by a vehicles skidding across the coverplate of seismic
FEA of stresses induced in seismic joint
system by point loads of wheels of loaded forklift.
In November of 2015, EMSEAL CEO, Lester Hensley, participated as a panelist at the TransOvation innovation conference held at 3M's Innovation center in St. Paul, MN.
When aksed to refelct on EMSEAL's innovation ethic, he said as regards the curiosity to innovate: "Innovation is the distillation of purpose to its simplest form."
And, as regards the drive to innovate: "Innovation is the passionate and tireless pursuit of the possible."
And so, it is on these tenets that EMSEAL's drive to improve is founded.
Never content to copy
systems that have inadequately addressed the problems for which they
were designed, EMSEAL's product development mantra has long been,
"Innovate, don't imitate".
For, example, our sales reps
for years begged us to bring out a seismic expansion joint. "Just
give us something the same as all the other manufacturers have, so we
can at least bid the work," they begged.
Yet what is offered are
systems comprised of as many as fifteen different components, are fiddly
to install, not watertight, use anchors embedded or forced into
concrete, and are noisy and prone to loosening in operation.
Instead, EMSEAL took the
years, FEA analyses, prototyping, field testing and iterating needed to
The result is a patented, paradigm
shifting system that is watertight at the deck surface, handles traffic and joint movement,
is quiet and easily installed without any invasive anchoring.
Similarly, this approach has
lead to the disruptive innovation embodied in EMSEAL's
award winning line of fire-rated expansion
Fire protection is now
built-in to the expansion joint. This means that a UL and ULC certified
fire rating can be achieved in a in single installation of a single
system without the need to add blankets, mineral wool, fire caulk or
other firestopping components.
The uniqueness of the
EMSHIELD inventions has not only been acknowledge with an SBANE
Innovation award but also by the United States Patent and Trademark
office through the
of multiple patents--six in 2013/2014 alone.
Leader--Foam Sealant Systems
As the technology leader in the field of
precompressed foam sealants and expansion joint systems, research and
development is a cornerstone of EMSEAL's growth and continuous
This aggressive, creative
and innovative R&D process brought to market a
paradigm shifting new impregnation (microsphere-modified acrylic) that
is more stable and temperature tolerant than any predecessor or
competitive technology. On this foundation, EMSEAL has launched
breakthrough products including:
SJS SYSTEM--watertight, high-movement, seismic coverplate systems
for larger joint openings;
DSM SYSTEM--non-invasive trafficable joint for new and retrofit deck
Double-Sided SEISMIC COLORSEAL--for treatment of multiple sides of a
wall joint in a single installation;
DFR2 and DFR3--UL 2079 certified, 2 and 3 hour rated, watertight,
trafficable deck and floor joints.
UNIVERSAL-90's--factory fabricated transition and termination units
to ensure continuity of seal at plane changes;
CHEMSEAL--polysulfide coated, chemical resistant system for waste
water, chlorine and other chemical environments;
DSF SYSTEM--NSF compliant system for potable water; and
BEJS SYSTEM--bridge expansion joint system;
WFR2 and WFR3--UL 2079 certified, 2-hour rated, wall expansion joint for
gypsum and concrete wall assemblies;
SecuritySeal SSW2--UL 2079 certified, 2-hour rated, pick-resistant,
wall expansion joint for concrete walls.
SecuritySeal SSF2 and SSF3--UL 2079 certified, 2 and 3 hour rated,
pick resistant, watertight, deck and floor joints.
Submerseal--chlorine and saline resistant, pre compressed sealant
for head of water conditions in swimming pools and other immersed
draft, heat, cold and dust blocking acoustic joint filler for interior,
non-moving gaps in partitions
SJS-FR1 and SJS FR2--UL 2079 certified, 1 and 2 hour rated, 100%
movement, seismic deck and floor joints.
-- FP (for plaza) systems that ensure watertight integration with buried
waterproofing membranes in plaza decks and split slabs while
incorporating a fire rating where needed.
Leader--Extruded Rubber Joint Seals
Innovation in extruded expansion joint technologies has resulted in the
dual-flange membrane integration roof expansion joint system with
continuity of seal to wall expansion joints.
Shear Pocket Technology--method for accommodating exaggerated shear
movement in extruded sealing glands.
integration with below-grade waterproofing membranes in postive as well
as negative (blind-side) expansion joint waterproofing.
SBANE 2010 Innovation Awards Winner:
The innovation represented in the
family of products, earned EMSEAL a nomination as a candidate for the
2010 SBANE Innovation Awards. From a pool of 162 candidates,
EMSEAL was judged a winner and joins Staples, Genzyme, ZipCar and iRobot
among other prior winners of this prestigious award.
In addition to the pursuit of breakthrough
sealing technologies, EMSEAL actively pursues product improvements,
product evolution, process improvements; and standards and performance
The mission of Research and Development is
to promote technology innovation that enables EMSEAL to retain its
leadership in providing expansion joint sealing and bridging solutions to its
marketplace. The R&D engineering staff is united by a core set of
professional values and practices. Chief among these are rigorous standards of technical excellence, genuine
curiosity, and intellectual integrity.
within the R&D unit include:
The goal is
to continually seek better, more efficient, and more effective ways to
manufacture existing products as well as to enhance the performance
capabilities of existing products while simultaneously seeking breakthroughs
resulting in the creation of new products altogether.
In-house INSTRON capability allows
testing and information gathering on material properties.
Microscopic observation of various foam
types and the relationship of impregnation or saturation options to the cell structure
of the foam is an example of ongoing research that informs
innovation--most recently the breakthrough release of EMSEAL's new microsphere-modified acrylic impregnations.
R&D initiatives are managed in a
cooperative input environment on EMSEAL's intranet.
This instrument is a repository for
ideas as well as a management tool for tracking tasks and progress on active R&D
Identification of market needs, customer
feedback, and employee generated ideas are gathered and logged in the in the
same way that paradigm breaking brainstorming based on chemical technology
breakthroughs discovered through research by dedicated R&D staff.
market driven performance requirements and demand-urgency, projects are
scheduled and given priority.