Optimising the antifouling performance of PEG silicone coatings

Scientists have presented novel antifouling coatings that may have great potential to be applied for marine vessels in line with their low-cost in raw materials and high performance of the final products.

A ship.
The prepared self-healing superhydrophobic coating with mechanochemical stabilisation has a bright prospect for anti-corrosion application under harsh service environments.  Image source: Foundry - Pixabay (symbol image).

Antifouling coatings are critical in preventing the surface of sea vessels being heavily fouled by bio-organisms. Researchers have now attached biocidal moieties (Isobornyl methacrylate, IBOMA) to the side chains of a polyacrylic polymer to form an antifouling polymer (AFP). Then, a hydrophilic polysiloxane (HP) was prepared through the polyaddition of polyethylene glycol (PEG) and alkoxysilane onto the main chain of hydrogen silicone oil.

Finally, hydrophilic fouling release coatings (FRCs) were formed by the reaction of the antifouling polymer and the HP polymer with an interpenetrating polymer network (IPN) method (IPN-FRCs).

High performance

The IPN-FRCs exhibit high adhesion strength to the substrate, and the surface roughness is greatly reduced when submerged in seawater. Furthermore, the IPN-FRCs have high performance against seawater bio-organisms, such as barnacles, during both in-lab and marine field tests when right polymer ratios were chosen.

The study has been published in Journal of Coatings Technology and Research, Volume 18, 2021.

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