Nanotech clay armour creates fire resistant hard wearing latex emulsion paints

July 26, 2007
Diagram of clay armour
Diagram of clay armour

Researchers at the University of Warwick's Department of Chemistry have found a way of replacing the soap used to stabilize latex emulsion paints with nanotech sized clay armour that can create a much more hard wearing and fire resistant paint.

To date latex emulsion paints have relied on the addition of soaps or similar materials to overcome the polymer parts of the paint's aversion to water, stabilize the paint, and make it work.

The University of Warwick chemistry researchers led by Dr Stefan Bon have found a simple way to individually coat the polymer particles used in such paints with a series of nanosized Laponite clay discs. The discs effectively create an armoured layer on the individual polymer latex particles in the paint. The clay discs are 1 nanometre thick by 25 nanometres in diameter.

The Lapointe clay discs can be applied using current industrial paint manufacture equipment. They not only provides an alternative to soap but can also be used to make the paint much more hard wearing and fire resistant.

The process devised by the Warwick team can be used to create highly sensitive materials for sensors. The researchers can take closely packed sample of the armoured polymers and heat it to burn away the polymer cores of the armoured particles leaving just a network of nanotech sized connected hollow spheres. This gives a very large useful surface area in a very small space which is an ideal material to use to create compact but highly sensitive sensors.

Their research is in a paper enitled "Pickering Miniemulsion Polymerization Using Laponite Clay as a Stabilizer" by Stefan A. F. Bon and Patrick J. Colver and is published as the cover article in Langmuir. The ACS Journal of Surfaces and Colloids Vol. 23, Issue 16 July 31.

Source: University of Warwick

Explore further: Combating bacteria via silver-dammar coating

Related Stories

Recommended for you

Silicon chip with integrated laser: Light from a nanowire

February 11, 2016

Physicists at the Technical University of Munich (TUM) have developed a nanolaser, a thousand times thinner than a human hair. Thanks to an ingenious process, the nanowire lasers grow right on a silicon chip, making it possible ...

Bumpy liquid films could simplify fabrication of microlenses

February 11, 2016

Have you ever noticed that when heated a film of oil in a pan doesn't remain completely flat? Instead, it forms a wavy pattern that resembles the exterior of an orange. These sorts of deformations inspired a group of researchers ...

A new way to make higher quality bilayer graphene

February 8, 2016

(Phys.org)—A team of researchers with members from institutions in the U.S., Korea and China has developed a new way to make bilayer graphene that is higher in quality than that produced through any other known process. ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.