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Basics on PU Chemistry, Benefits and main Applications in Coating Industry

SpecialChem / May 11, 2005

Polyurethane coatings were originally defined as products made from polyisocyanates and polyols, but today one defines it more broadly and includes all systems based on a polyisocyanate whether the reaction is with a polyol, a polyamine or with water. This means that a PU paint may contain urethane, urea, allophanate and biuret linkages. Polyurethane coatings have grown rapidly since they were first introduced fifty years ago because of their highly versatile chemistry and superior properties particularly as to toughness, resistance to abrasion and chemicals whilst also being flexible and adhering well to all sorts of substrates. There are four broad categories of PU technology used in the paint industry, the first three being reactive systems and the fourth covering all systems with no isocyanate reaction during final application : * two-component systems consisting of a polyisocyanate and a polyol or polyamine that are mixed just prior to application and curing at room temperature. In volume terms, this family accounts for over half of all urethane coatings sold in the world.

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