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Sunday, 19 January 2020

Do-it-all solutions for wood coatings

Thursday, 21 June 2012 | Posted by: Kirsten Wrede, European Coatings Journal

What do modern wood coatings have to offer today? Apparently they are supposed to be all-rounders, being VOC-free, based on renewable materials, provide first-class properties, display high-end appearance and feel. It is amazing how almost any new product on the market seems to fulfill these promises.

There are biopolymer-based additives that provide wax-like properties, formaldehyde-free crosslinkers that fulfill high-performance requirements, alkyd-modified polyurethane dispersions featuring reduced VOC-levels and a higher renewables content, high-performance additives formulated with renewable resources,… Of course, all these "green” products mentioned above exhibit excellent performance when it comes to chemical and mechanical properties etc.

I doubt that these do-it-all solutions represent the reality. Can we really talk about 100 % VOC-free systems? Is biobased technology already state-of-the-art? What about raw material costs and shortages? It’s obvious that R&D is dominated by environmental legislation, but there is the economic pressure, too. So I guess it will take some more time until inexpensive/waterborne/biobased/high-performance solutions are commonplace in the wood coatings industry. Nevertheless, it’s good to learn about and to promote new efforts to meet all the expectations voiced by the industry, end-users, and legislators so that they can penetrate the market as soon as possible.

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