An industrial coating is a paint or coating defined by its protective, rather than its aesthetic properties, although it can provide both.
The most common use of industrial coatings is for corrosion control of steel structures such as offshore platforms, bridges and underground pipelines. Other functions include intumescent coatings for fire resistance. The most common polymers used in industrial coatings are polyurethane, epoxy and moisture-cure urethane. Another highly common polymer used in industrial coating is a fluoropolymer. There are many types of industrial coatings including inorganic zinc, phosphate, and Xylan and PVD coatings.
Industrial coatings are often composites of various substances. For example Xylan dry-film lubricants are composites of fluoropolymers (typically PTFE, PFA, and FEP) and reinforcing thermoset polyimide and polyamide binder resins initially suspended in a variety of solvents (such as ethyl acetate, xylene, dimethlformamide, and N-methyl 2-yrrolidone).
A typical coating system may include a primer, an intermediate coat, and a top coat. The polymer film acts as a physical barrier between the steel substrate and the corrosive environment such as atmosphere, water and soil. Industrial coatings are also available as garage floor coatings such as epoxy, polyurea, and polyaspartic. Different types of coatings are used for protection in different environments. A detailed Engineering Specification would usually indicate this process.
The 4 main stages of a three coat system:
Abrasive Blasting: This roughens and cleans the surface and prepares the surfaces for Primer.
Primer: This wets the substrate, creating a base for the Intermediate coat. These primers can consist of Inorganic Zinc Silicate, Epoxy Zinc or even general Epoxy Polyamide.
Intermediate: Provides system thickness build, and prevents permeability. Intermediates can consist of general Epoxy Polyamide, amongst others.
Top coat: Provides Chemical Resistance and adds aesthetic value to the surface.
Martin Coetzee - Protective Coatings Application specialist South Africa
- Paolo Nanetti: Coatings from A to Z, Vincentz Verlag, Hannover, 2006, ISBN 3-87870-173-X
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