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Sunday, 25 October 2020

NIR-reflective pigments – Regulations for comparability needed

Thursday, 27 March 2014 | Posted by: Michael Richter, European Coatings Journal

Recently I generated my first product overview regarding NIR-reflective pigments. Within my research I encountered one major difficulty. It was hardly possible for me to compile a table in which these promising functional pigments are comparable to each other.

Why NIR-reflective pigments?

Near infrared radiation transmits roughly 50% of the solar energy and is responsible for heating up offices, rooms and cars.
NIR-reflective pigments are mainly used in exterior architectural coatings to reflect this share of radiation. Benefits are:

  • lower inside temperature
  • energy savings for air conditioners
  • increased durability of heat insulation systems by lowering thermomechanical stress

Characteristic factor for describing NIR-reflective pigments – the TSR-value

The TSR-value (total solar reflectance) is a physical dimension given in percent which describes the ability of a surface to reflect solar radiation. By applying NIR-reflective pig-ments the TSR-value of the surface is improved and the inner heat of buildings is decreased.
To describe the performance of their pigments, suppliers refer to these TSR-values. Unfortunately the coating systems in which these pigments are incorporated differ in binder system, film thickness and pigment share. Furthermore the substrate and the colour of the substrate are important issues as well. That´s why some pigment producers decided to determine the TSR-values of their pure pigments – pressed as pellets.

Lacking comparability

As long as measurements of TSR-values are not consistently performed in order to characterise NIR-reflective pigments, it will be difficult for coating manufacturers to make a reliable decision for one or another pigment. Perhaps it is even necessary to generate an industrial standard method, by which manufacturers obtain the possibility to compare different pigments.

Now it is your turn!

What is your opinion? Do you have any suggestions or ideas to solve this problem?
We are looking forward to your ideas and an interesting discussion,

kind regards,
Michael Richter

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Michael Richter
European Coatings Journal
Michael Richter
Scientific Consultant
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