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10. Apr 2018 | Raw materials

Prestigious award for enzymatic polymerization of polysaccharides in coatings

At this years American Coatings SHOW Christian Lenges from DuPont was awarded for the most outstanding technical presentation. Lenges work is an important piece towards more bio-based and more sustainable coatings.

Steve Sides and Sonja Schulte present the AC Award to Christian Lenges (second to the right) of DuPont Industrial Biosciences and Monica G. Harvey of DuPont Industrial Biosciences (far left). Source: Joe Chung

Enzymatic polymerization is an emerging technology to polymerize sucrose into engineered polysaccharides, which can be employed in the production of new biomaterials. The paper presents an example of the new technology, namely a specific enzymatic polymerization of sucrose to alpha-1,3-polyglucose. Structurally, polysacharides are highly diverse bioploymers. The polysaccharide isolated from the biopolymerization process is a free flowing, white powder with an high surface area.

bio-based and multifunctional

The researchers highlight the use of the polymer as a matting additive for coatings, which is able to reduce gloss for matting applications. But the polysaccharide is multifunctional and when redispersed under high shear rate, it is able to also modify the viscosity and impart a thixotropic rheology to the paint system.

The microstructure of the polysaccharide allows it to be easily formulated into various paint resins with high compability. For instance, due to the chracteristic of the glucan material to form stable colloidial dispersions, it can be formulated directly into various water-based latex and also solvent-based resins.

The Award

During the plenary session on April 9, Steve Sides of the American Coatings Association and Sonja Schulte of Vincentz Network presented the American Coatings Award as well as $2,500 in prize money to the DuPont Industrial Bio-sciences team. In a video, Lenges presented the findings of his team which was met with great applause.

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