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The Principles of Dispersion and Stabilization of Pigments

SpecialChem / Dec 6, 2006

Product developers experience that the dispersion and stabilization of pigments and fillers in modern coatings and inks, like water-based, high-solids and powder coatings, is more challenging than in conventional solventbased systems. The dispersion and stabilization of solid particles can be accelerated and improved when the basic principles that govern the three steps of the process are used in an effective manner. By understanding and using the basic knowledge and the information about the raw materials and the equipment to be used a lot of problems can be prevented and time and money can be saved. The three steps that lead the formulator from dry pigment agglomerate to a stable pigment or filler dispersion are wetting, separation and stabilization. In the wetting step the air that is present in the dry pigment agglomerates is substituted by the liquid used in the dispersion process. Wetting can proceed when the surface tension of the liquid is lower than the surface energy of the solid particles.

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