Nanocomposites for the protection of heritage buildings

A new study describes the synthesis of an Ag-TiO2/PDMS nanocomposite protective coating and its use as a self-cleaning, water repellent and antimicrobial agent.

Self-cleaning and durable protective coatings can be used in the field of monument conservation. Image source: Pexels - Pixabay (symbol image).

The protection of historical sites becomes a necessity due to several decay phenomena induced by pollution, microorganism colonisation, and water. A new research study has focused on elaborating photo-activated nanocomposites to protect outdoors heritage buildings. Hence, novel Ag-TiO2/PDMS hydrophobic nanocomposites (with low doping rates) thin films with enhanced photo-response activity have been developed to be used as self-cleaning durable protective coatings in the field of monument conservation. The protective coatings elaborated in the new work are intended to have multifunctional properties (water repellent features, self-cleaning activity, antimicrobial agent).

Efficient and durable protective coatings

Test results suggested that the samples doped with low concentrations (≤1 mol%) of silver (Ag-doped TiO2) together with PDMS can be considered as efficient and durable protective coatings for highly porous bio-calcarenite stone. Such doping amount is considered very low compared to the other research works that have been performed in the same field.

The study has been published in Progress in Organic Coatings, Volume 158, September 2021.

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