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Pioneering a safer palette

Published by , Editor
Energy Global,

For decades, the paint industry has relied on isocyanate and epoxy for their robust qualities, notably in durability and corrosion prevention. Yet, it is become increasingly clear that these substances pose considerable health and environmental dangers, from allergic reactions to potential cancer risks following exposure. In light of these issues, forward-thinking innovations are leading the way towards safer, more sustainable industrial coating solutions.

The path to safer alternatives

The journey towards a future devoid of isocyanate and epoxy marks a significant shift in chemical engineering. Utilising new curing methods and binder systems, manufacturers are now creating coatings that preserve the strong performance characteristics of traditional paints but without the associated health risks. This progress, overcoming challenges such as achieving the same level of durability as epoxies and the longevity of the compounds, is a demonstration of the industry’s dedication to innovative solutions, having the human and environmental safety highest up on the agenda.

Mitigating risks for a greener future

Long-standing concerns over the use of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and hazardous substances in traditional paints have brought about rigorous scrutiny due to the risks they present to both applicators and the environment. The introduction of products like TEKNONISO COMBI 333-300 addresses these concerns head-on, promoting safer working environments and adherence to stricter safety standards. These new paints respond to dual demands from both the market and users by reducing VOC emissions and avoiding substances of very high concern (SVHCs), including aromatic solvents, heavy metals, zinc, and tin – marking a major step forward in environmental progress.

Matching traditional paints with safer composition

When it comes to practical application, these next-generation paints compete admirably with their traditional counterparts. Offering similar, if not enhanced, corrosion resistance and a safer application process, they represent a substantial advancement. They will not completely replace traditional chemistries but will serve as a safer alternative for many application areas. Their performance metrics, including quicker drying times and longer pot life, not only meet but frequently surpass industry benchmarks, assuring that these new products are more than a mere safer substitute – they are a better choice.

For example, TEKNONISO COMBI 333-300 has undergone extensive testing, which includes:

  • Flexibility (Impact Resistance ISO 6272 and EN ISO 20482 Erichsen cupping test).
  • Outdoor durability (QUV TEST ISO 4892-3, WOM TEST ISO 4892-2).
  • Corrosion resistance (Salt spray ISO 9227, Humidity Cabin ISO 6270, ISO 12944-9).
  • Chemical Resistance (EN 12720).
  • Thermal Cycling Resistance test (TM0404 sect. 9).
  • Flexibility (NACE RP0394).
  • Drying time at different conditions (ISO 9117).

Balancing cost with efficiency

Although the initial cost of materials may be greater, the operational savings can be significant. Extended pot life means less material waste, and faster drying times lead to increased productivity, positioning these paints as a prudent economic decision for the long term. The elimination of the need for high curing temperatures also offers the potential for energy savings, making this a cost-effective choice for industrial settings.

Regulatory developments and the green agenda

In the EU, Teknos, as a coatings industry participant, operates within the framework of essential chemical regulations. These regulations include REACH (1907/2006), the Classification, Labelling and Packaging (CLP) Regulation (1272/2008), and the Biocidal Products Regulation (528/2012). They impose stringent restrictions on regulated substances and compel coatings companies like Teknos to fulfil specific obligations.


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