Insight from Ian Martin, Technical Manager

It makes a difference when it comes to relationships, but having the right chemistry is also a key ingredient in the creation of polyurethane coatings, adhesives, and sealants. Like any good relationship, it’s something you must work hard at in order to achieve the best result. This is why custom chemistry is often seen as one of the best ways to create tailored products that will continually take performance to new levels. So, what is the secret to custom chemistry, and how can it make a difference in a market saturated with so much choice? 

The secret to any great relationship starts through conversation. As a leading global manufacturer of specialist resin and polymer technologies, Incorez has a team of chemists who listen to their customers, so they can solve their problems. It could be a new resin, or a matter of tweaking an existing formulation. It might be helping a customer achieve the finish they have been wanting or pass a regulation they have failed for years. Regardless of the requirement, custom chemistry will help improve a customer’s product in the long term.

Let’s look at osmotic blistering, a common problem in the coatings industry. Traditional polyurethane coating applications have a slow and haphazard curing process, which allows moisture or humidity to cause unwanted reactions, generating CO2 bubbles. These create pinholes or blisters, which weaken the film integrity, and spoil the finished appearance. The fact that these bubbles occur during the curing process would be seen by many as unavoidable, but oxazolidines speed up curing, and prevent the generation of CO2. In other words, oxazolidine technology will eliminate bubbling during application, helping to preserve aesthetics, and minimise pinhole defects. This ensures a better finish, and improved film integrity. Moisture-triggered chemistry enables curing in all temperatures and humidity conditions, with the same end result – a tougher, more durable film.

Chemically related to oxazolidines, Incorez also offers an aldimine latent hardener, Incozol BH, which hydrolyses on exposure to moisture, to give you a reactive amine crosslinker ideally suited for use in high-build polyurethane systems, such as sealants and adhesives. This unique latent curing agent not only speeds up the cure of low NCO-containing prepolymers, but also allows for faster through-cure with no bubbles from the formation of carbon dioxide, giving you a perfectly cured product no matter what the environment.

The huge rise in resin flooring has seen customers demand greater levels of performance for specific applications, but much depends on the nature of the amine curing agent. There are many perceived weaknesses of water-based curing agents, one being that they cannot achieve the same performance as solvent-based technology. Incorez has taken performance to a new level, developing a hardener that has good universal compatibility with all epoxy resin types, and addresses fundamental challenges with water-based technology, such as low-temperature cure, blushing, and water resistance. This coupled with physical characteristics such as excellent abrasion and impact resistance, together with high chemical, water and solvent resistance, make Incorez curing agents the perfect choice for user-friendly industrial and decorative concrete floor paints.

But, when it comes to customised solutions, there’s few technologies that can match waterbased polyurethane dispersions for versatility and performance.  The launch of the Dispurez product range in 2015 was the start of a new era for these waterbased products, delivering high performance with environmentally and user-friendly chemistry.  With the recent addition of a new tough, chemically and hydrolytically stable product, Dispurez 103, the product range  generation, high performance products.  However, if these don’t quite suit your needs then our skilled and experienced research team in Preston can go one step further and tailor these to deliver exactly what you want.

The search for products that help improve the performance of formulated systems is constantly evolving whatever industry you are in. By working closely with our customers, to continually innovating and breaking new ground Incorez can make a real difference where it counts.