Influence of zirconium dioxide in polyurethane: Improved properties
Polyurethane (PU) based on an eco-friendly renewable resource, namely hydroxyl telechelic natural rubber (HTNR), was in situ prepared using one-shot polymerisation with zirconium(IV) oxide (ZrO2) incorporated. The modification of HTNR, preparation of PU together with the interactions of PU and ZrO2 surfaces were examined using FTIR, ATR-FTIR, and 1H-NMR. Also, the optimal ZrO2 content in PU matrix was used to coat carbon steel and the intrinsic properties of the composites were determined.
Simple coating process and cost-effectiveness
It was found that the tensile strength, Young’s modulus, hardness, abrasion resistance, and thermal stability of PU/ZrO2 composites increased with ZrO2 content, particularly at 2 wt% of ZrO2, owing to the homogeneous dispersion of ZrO2 throughout the PU matrix. After coating, the PU/ZrO2 composites showed good pencil hardness, adhesive performance, gloss, and wettability on the carbon steel substrate, enabling a simple coating process and cost-effectiveness.
The study has been published in Journal of Coatings Technology and Research, Volume 18, 2021.