Accu-Cast offers more types of alginate and more useful information about alginate than anyone.
Here's the Short Answer to the question "What is Alginate?"
Our experience making alginate goes back to 1969. As far as we can tell, we make more alginate formulas than anyone- 21 at last count. We make them that set in anywhere from 1 minute 20 seconds to over 10 minutes. Ten of our formulas are offered on our website- the other 11 are custom formulas developed for various companies to meet their specific needs.
There really is a lot more to alginate than most people think. The properties we balance are:
If you need an alginate for a specific use- chances are VERY GOOD that we have it already on the shelf. If not, we could most likely make it for you.
Accu-Cast Alginates are extremely safe molding materials. We have finely tuned the properties of our alginates to make them ideal for a wide variety of jobs. One of the most popular applications is Lifecasting. This is the process of creating a three-dimensional copy of the living human body. Most common lifecasts are of hands, faces, feet, torsos, and pregnant bellies. Lifecasting has become evermore popular and can replicate human details as small as fingerprints and pores.
Alginates can be used for other types of molds as well. It is widely used in prosthetic medicine, creating artificial arms and legs. The dental industry uses alginate to make molds of teeth in the making of dentures and bridges. Alginates are also used in general mold making in the production of prototypes of new products.
Some people wonder, what is alginate made from? How does it work? That's the interesting part. Our alginates are made from food grade chemicals found throughout nature. The first component is alginic acid from seaweed. It is an organic polymer derived from the stems, and when combining with water, it forms a viscous gum.
Another active ingredient in alginate is hydrous calcium sulfate, as found in the White Cliffs of Dover, England. When alginate 'sets', these polymers cross-link to one another using calcium ions as the glue, forming a flexible solid similar to rubber or cheese.