FKM was originally produced by Du Pont, the original developers of Fluoro-Elastomer. FKM is generally used as the name for the material, regardless of who has manufactured it. The actual name Viton is a registered trademark of the Chemours Company, a spin-off from Du Pont that was started in 2015. Categorized under the ASTM D1418 and ISO 1629 designation of FKM is a synthetic rubber and a fluoropolymer elastomer. FKM is distinguished from other rubber types by mainly being manufactured in brown or green.
A highly resilient type of synthetic rubber, FKMmaterial is very hard-wearing and it is these qualities that make it so popular with the gas and oil industries. This is because the material can withstand aggressive fuels and chemicals that would rapidly degrade and destroy other rubbers. For example, tubing and hose linings made from FKM material are used in the transportation of Bio-diesel, which is a highly unstable fuel. This fuel would rapidly eat away other types of rubber if used.
However, FKM is not just used with fuels. The materials extremely resilient and flexible nature means that it can operate at extremely high and low temperatures, ranging from -10°C up to +120°C. Due to this superb temperature resistance, FKM is used in engines and compressors where high temperatures are common.
FKM rubber is used to make o-rings and gaskets, plus several other items such as moulded extrusions. Fluoro-Elastomer sheeting is also used where explosive gases are used extensively, with the material’s resilient nature is considered the ideal fit. FKM is also used to make gloves and are just the ticket when coming into contact with strong organic solvents that have highly corrosive properties. You can find these gloves in laboratories as well as gas and oil industries where protection from dangerous chemicals is a safety requirement.