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Thursday, 22 October 2020

The wind of change is flexible

Monday, 22 August 2011 | Posted by: Sonja Specks, European Coatings Journal

In the coatings industry you can see technical mile stones. Starting with natural oils and binders who were replaced by industrially produced alkyd coatings, or the change from brush to cathodic dip painting or roller coating. Today we have an enormous variety of application and drying technologies, as well as lots of different raw materials. This shows that the industry has faced a lot of changes and has tried to adapt, and it shows that we might be able to solve upcoming changes in the future, too.

Some of these changes have been achieved easily, others needed more work, but for all of them researchers needed a lot of flexibility and optimism. Today we are facing changes when decisions are made to switch from solventborne coatings to waterbornes. Or using UV-light for hardening instead of ovens. People try to improve a situation or at least to adapt to a new system. Whether it is motivated by modified laws, an idea in the laboratory or a specific requirement from the customer - everything leads to changes, or better called: innovations. But for sure all of us need to remember that changes might be difficult. Not only in handling. But what is guaranteed: it costs a lot of motivation, based on flexibility and optimism, to leave a proven product behind you have grown so fond of. But without these developments, we would still be trapped in painting our cottages with simple natural binders

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