Innovative, coated products require new testing methods

Coatings can be used to protect materials against the effects of rust, mould or dirt. This is why the Nanex Company, a manufacturer of protective products, is collaborating with the Sirris Smart Coating Lab in using nanotechnology to develop and improve existing product formulations.

Water, food and soil are all around and are essential for our existence, but they can also cause a lot of damage. Just think of rust, mould and the damage they can do to all kinds of materials. Hence the great interest in protecting products from the effects of such things as water vapour, liquids and pollution. This can be done by using a coating.

The degree of protection required depends on the application, the material to be protected, the environment of use and the required durability. The quality and applicability of a protective coating thus depends on several factors.

Long-term protection tested

Ideally, the coating will provide the necessary protection throughout the entire lifespan of the product, but all too often it provides only temporary protection or environmental factors compromise its protective properties. This makes it necessary to evaluate these properties under different circumstances during the development and optimisation of a product.

The Ghent-based Nanex Company, which provides high-quality protective products, began a project with the Sirris Smart Coating Lab to further develop and improve existing product formulations by using nanotechnology. This collaboration aims to create innovative products with added functionalities in an environmentally-friendly and sustainable product.

In order to evaluate the properties of newly-formulated products, it is important to use tests that are relevant to the new development. Ageing tests on impregnated nanocoatings for wood and stone, pollution and cleanability tests on textiles and leather and anti-static testing for developing more effective coatings are just a few examples of what the Sirris Smart Coating Lab can offer.

In this way, Sirris is closely involved in new developments that will determine the growth of the Nanex Company.