Technical Focus: What is Potting, anyway?

George Moore
Adhesive Properties, Electronics Adhesives
November 22, 2023

You may have come across the term ‘potting’ in adhesives and wondered what it actually means. We’re not talking about plant pots, or potting around the shed here!

Potting refers to the ‘filling in’ or encapsulating of a space with an adhesive. The space essentially becomes a ‘pot’ to be filled up with the adhesive. It is often used in electronics applications, especially those involving circuit boards. Since these contain a host of delicate components such as microchips, transistors and resistors, adhesives act as a sealant designed to protect these components from damage, while keeping out moisture, dust and other unwanted elements. They also serve as a protector against impact stress and vibration, which could otherwise easily damage these sensitive products. 

You can read a more in-depth summary about the reasons for, and benefits of potting here

A real-life example of potting power!

We recently went on a bit of a rampage at our UK lab. Or should I say I did, saw in hand! You can see the outcome of this in the image below. This poor EV charging cable had no idea what it had in store that day, and ended up getting sawn to pieces. This was all in the name of science, and, as it later turned out, potting! 

EV charging cable sawn in half, with potting adhesive clearly visible.

Our main goal was actually to get a peek at the wiring within the charger, but in doing so we also discovered why this thing was so darn heavy! The core components had been thoroughly protected with a thick layer of beige epoxy potting adhesive. This adhesive, whilst protecting the wiring, also made for an incredibly tough, rugged and robust charging cable. Had it not been sawn in half, we’d wager a car could have run over this thing and it would still have been in one piece. Such is the power of potting!

Now that you’re filled in (pun very much intended) on all things potting, consider contacting us for more information and to find out how we can help you with your application.

Let’s Discuss Your Project.

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