Nanotechnology, the development of the minute, is already making its mark in the coatings industry, with a number of commercial applications offering benefits such as greatly improved scratch resistance in automotive finishes, antibacterial properties, self-cleaning finishes and enhanced weathering resistance. And we've only just started to exploit this more refined approach to coatings chemistry.
What can we achieve in the next few years? The diagram shows the main current reasons given by paintmakers for investing in nanotechnology, and these will be explored below; but be assured, that 45% of 'Other' applications denotes many more interesting benefits for our industry, as discussed in this month's editorial.Any study of nanotechnology requires us to consider matter interactions at a macromolecular level and in some cases even to allow for quantum effects. While there are no precise boundaries between the nanoscale and the merely microscopic, the widely used definition is that nanotechnology deals with particles or structures with a size range from 1 to 100 nm (0.001-0.1 µm) or less.
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