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NEI Addresses Unmet Self-Healing Needs for Transparent Polymeric Films Market

June 18, 2019

Somerset, NJ (USA)NEI Corporation announced today that it has successfully demonstrated application of its NANOMYTE® MEND 1000 self-healing coating technology on PET film. The coated film is able to recover from repeated scuffing and scratching after heating to 60°C, typically using hot water or a hair dryer. Self-healing is achieved by a thermally-induced, physical self-healing phenomenon which leads to gap closing and crack sealing. This allows the coating to heal repeatedly at the same defect location, which helps to reduce life cycle costs by increasing the service life of the coated material. NEI’s MEND coatings exploit a unique phase-separated morphology that facilitates delivery of the self-healing agent to the damage site (such as a scratch or crack), thereby restoring the coating appearance & function.

There are numerous applications for polymeric films produced in the roll-to-roll coating industry, including signage, vehicle wraps, interior and exterior wall wraps, and protective overlaminates such as those commonly found on touchscreens or installed over window glass. These films are typically relied upon to protect from physical damage or to reduce the transmission of light while providing heat rejection, features which are in high demand for automotive and architectural glass.

Roll-to-roll processes present unique challenges for coatings in terms of the speed and temperature necessary to achieve a sufficient cure. Line speed requirements will often dictate that curing occur within a period of 1-2 minutes at temperatures around 100°C. To increase the speed of cure to better suit continuous, roll-to-roll processing of coated film, NEI now supplies a catalyst additive which can reduce the dry-to-touch (DTT) time to as little as 1 minute at 100°C (exact time and temperature will depend on wet film thickness and other processing conditions), which has allowed its customers in the roll-to-roll coating industry to successfully process the coating.

NEI supplies three versions of its popular NANOMYTE® MEND self-healing coating products to meet different performance and processing requirements:

  • MEND 1000 – heat cure, 60°C healing temperature
  • MEND 2000 – heat cure, 25°C healing temperature
  • MEND 3000 – ambient cure, 60°C healing temperature

The coatings are supplied as 2 components, Parts A and B, which are mixed before application. Further customization can then be accomplished with the addition of a catalyst to speed up curing and/or a reducer to adjust viscosity. NEI can also supply coating formulations with increased viscosity to meet process requirements. Please refer to the product technical datasheets for further guidance. To enhance light-stability and weatherability, NEI also offers its MEND product line with UVP technology to protect sensitive surfaces by blocking UV light while preserving the coating performance. This feature can be critical for some applications, such as those which may cause yellowing of sensitive polymers. NANOMYTE® UVP coating products have demonstrated their ability to endure a minimum of 1000 hours of weatherability testing per ASTM D4587, “Accelerated Weathering under Fluorescent UV-Condensation Exposure”. The testing was performed in a QUV chamber under the conditions specified in ASTM G154, Cycle 1, the most commonly used exposure cycle designed to simulate severe outdoor service conditions.

NANOMYTE® MEND coating products can be applied by a variety of processes, including spraying, dipping and flowing. NEI also offers in-house coating services for customer’s parts as well as coating development services, wherein coating formulations are created to address specific customer requirements.

Links to Technical Data Sheets:

Additional Information: Safety Data SheetsMEND Product PageDemonstration Video

View / Download Press Release (pdf) ↓


About NEI Corporation: NEI Corporation is an application-driven company that utilizes nanotechnology to develop and produce advanced materials. The company’s core competencies are in synthesizing nanoscale materials and prototyping products that incorporate the advanced materials. NEI offers an array of Advanced Protective Coatings for metal and polymer surfaces. The coatings have tailored functionalities, such as anti-corrosion, self-healing, scratch resistance, ice-phobic, and self-cleaning.

For more information, give us a call or email us.

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NEI’s UV-Protect Technology featured in Coatings World Magazine

September 2018

NEI has introduced UV-Protect (UVP) technology to formulate enhanced versions of its popular NANOMYTE® coating products, which offer unique functionalities in coatings with unparalleled durability. The NANOMYTE® line of protective coatings and surface treatments provide tailored functionalities, such as hydrophobicity, superhydrophobicity, oleophobicity, superoleophobicity, self-healing, fog resistance, self-cleaning (or easy-to-clean), scratch resistance, anti-corrosion, and anti-icing. They have found wide applicability in the industrial and automotive markets for their versatility and ability to be applied to a variety of surfaces – including glass, plastic, fiber-composite, metal, and ceramic. UVP technology imparts enhanced protection from the effects of sun and weather exposure to maintain the unique properties of their coating products when subjected to long-term outdoor exposure.

The newly-introduced product lineup consists of:

Read the Complete Article:

https://www.coatingsworld.com/issues/2018-09-01/view_breaking-news/nei-introduces-uv-protect-coating-technology

About NEI Corporation:

NEI Corporation is an application-driven company that utilizes nanotechnology to develop and produce advanced materials. The company’s core competencies are in synthesizing nanoscale materials and prototyping products that incorporate advanced materials. NEI offers an array of Advanced Protective Coatings for metal and polymer surfaces, with tailored functionalities such as anti-corrosion, self-healing, scratch resistance, ice-phobic, and self-cleaning.

For more information, give us a call or email us.

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A New Perspective on Coatings and Surface Treatments

NEI Corporation’s Patented Technologies Provide a New Perspective on Coatings and Surface Treatment

Patents1Gains in productivity and efficiency are possible when a coating or surface treatment provides functionalities beyond the usual protective and aesthetic properties. This realization has sparked great interest in functional coatings in recent years for applications that traditionally have not used paints or coatings. A good example is the use of anti-ice coatings on power transmission lines. Mitigating ice accumulation will help prevent power outages, which has a tangible and beneficial economic impact. Another example is the use of a surface treatment to increase the efficiency of power generation turbines.

Examples of functionalities of interest for both industrial and consumer applications include:

  • Self-Healing: the coating or surface treatment autonomously repairs damage
  • Hydrophobicity: coated surfaces vigorously repel water droplets
  • Oleophobicity: prevents “oil” molecules from sticking to the surfacePatents2
  • Self-Cleaning / Easy-To-Clean: minimizes or eliminates the need for chemicals during washing

While great strides have been made in academic circles to understand the different surface phenomena of these so called ‘smart coatings’, commercial products to date have met with limited success because they are not engineered to meet all of the functional performance requirements that an application may need. For example, commercially available superhydrophobic coatings repel water droplets, but do not prevent the diffusion of water vapor – minimizing moisture ingress is a critical functionality for most protective coatings.

Patents3More often than not, many of the functionalities mentioned above need to be integrated into a single coating or surface treatment. For example, a transparent coating that resists finger printing also needs to be scratch resistant and durable. A coating that prevents fogging in eyewear and other transparent surfaces must also be durable and resistant to chemicals. Further, in order to meet the cost criteria, application of the coating must be compatible with conventional coating methods such as spray, dip, brush or flow. Over the past few years, NEI Corporation’s concerted efforts to develop and implement practical, multi-functional coatings are now coming to fruition.

Patents4Backed by a bevy of issued and pending patents, NEI has introduced an array of coating products under the registered trade name NANOMYTE®. For example, NANOMYTE® MEND is based on US Patent 8,987,352, where a thermally induced, physical self-healing phenomenon leads to gap closing and crack sealing. The self-healing coating involves a unique phase-separated morphology that facilitates the delivery of the self-healing agent to the damage site (such as a scratch or crack) thereby restoring the coating appearance & function. Utilizing commonly available polymer materials and nanoparticles arranged in a unique morphology to achieve self-healing, MEND offers a practical self-healing solution to common polymer coating systems. In response to the need for waterborne, self-healing coatings for non-metallic substrates, NEI developed a waterborne, polyurethane-based, self-healing coating. NANOMYTE® MEND for wood (US Patent 8,664,298) specifically targets the wood cabinet market. A more recent patent-pending version of MEND, referred to as MEND-RT, allows self-healing at near ambient temperature. It is used as the inter-layer of a coating stack and has been shown to enhance the corrosion resistance of traditional coating systems. The MEND coating platform is based on polyurethane, but the principle can be applied to other coating systems as well.

Patents5Self-healing principles can also be applied to surface treatments of metals, whereby the pretreatments can mimic the performance of chromate conversion coatings. To this end, NEI has developed a series of pretreatments for different metals where a chemical self-healing mechanism imparts corrosion resistance. For example, NANOMYTE® PT-60 is a patent-pending conversion coating for use on magnesium alloys. The nanoscale structure of the surface allows ions to diffuse to the damage site, forming a barrier that prevents further corrosion. In addition, PT-60 has been engineered to act as a tie layer that bonds the overlying primer with the metal, thereby leading to excellent performance in the field. Similarly, NEI’s NANOMYTE® PT-10M provides self-healing protection for aluminum, while patent-pending PT-20 is designed for use on steel, and PT-30 (US Patent 8,741,074) is used on copper alloys.

As previously mentioned, combining multiple functionalities in a coating, such as self-healing and superhydrophobicity, presents new opportunities not available until now. For example, NEI has been issued a patent (US Patent 8,968,459) for a superhydrophobic coating composition that also has a self-healing function similar to that of plant leaves. This self-healing, superhydrophobic coating mimics lotus leaves, which maintain their superhydrophobicity by repairing the damaged surface layer with a continuously-secreting hydrophobic epicuticular wax. Equipped with the ability to repair or renew itself, the novel NEI coating overcomes the durability problem of traditional superhydrophobic coatings.

Patents6Durable hydrophobic coatings are highly desirable for numerous applications as they usually impart easy-to-clean and stain-resisting properties to surfaces. For aesthetic reasons, there is also a need for a thin, transparent, easy-to-clean coating that does not add excess weight and does not change the appearance of the substrate to be coated. Further desirable properties of such coatings include a high degree of scratch/abrasion resistance, excellent adhesion, and chemical resistance, all of which are critical in maintaining a durable coating. In addressing these needs, NEI’s recently developed NANOMYTE® SuperCN and SR-100EC products are patent-pending transparent coatings with a unique combination of properties, including easy-to-clean and stain-resisting properties, excellent abrasion/scratch resistance, as well as good adhesion with a variety of substrates – including polymers, metals, and ceramics.

Patents7Scratch resistance is a sought-after property for coatings in a variety of applications, such as ophthalmic and sports-wear lenses, automobile and airplane windows. Plastic substrates, such as polycarbonate and acrylic, can scratch easily and lose transparency quickly during daily use and maintenance. Hard and optically transparent coatings for plastic substrates possess a significant market potential. NEI offers a patented (US Patent 9,006,370) transparent, scratch-resistant coating called NANOMYTE® SR-100, which exhibits significantly better abrasion resistance than commercially available, scratch-resistant coating products. A matte version of SR-100 has also been developed and is now commercially available.

Download Coatings Technology Brief (pdf) »

 


About NEI Corporation:

NEI is an application driven company that manufactures and sells Advanced Materials products, provides materials development services, and performs contract-based R&D for public and private entities. NEI’s products, which are sold under the registered trademark NANOMYTE®, are backed by a suite of issued and pending patents. NEI has built a strong manufacturing and R&D infrastructure that enables rapid transition of concepts to products. The company has a 10,000 square foot, state-of-the-art materials manufacturing and testing facility in Somerset, New Jersey, which includes high temperature furnaces with controlled atmospheres, mixing, blending and drying equipment, coaters, particle characterization instruments, corrosion testing equipment, polymer films & coatings characterization, and a Li-ion battery testing laboratory. Since its inception, NEI has partnered with small companies, large multinational corporations, U.S. Defense Laboratories, U.S. National Laboratories, and Universities. The relationships take on different forms, ranging from a strategic partnership to joint development efforts targeted at specific applications.

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