Architectural Coatings Technology Evolves

By Tim Wright | January 17, 2011

Coatings manufacturers depend on raw material advances to innovate new technology for the market.

Representing the largest end-use segment of the coatings industry, architectural coatings are used for the decoration and general maintenance of residential, commercial, institutional and industrial buildings.

It has long been recognized that there are at least two divergent types of customers for architectural coatings: the professional painter and the DIY buyer. Manufacturers continue to innovate new technology for both.

Dunn-Edwards has introduced a new line of interior maintenance paint under the Contractor’s Edge label, in two gloss levels—flat and semi-gloss. Both come in a controlled tintable white C-Base, and six stock colors—Cottage White, Navajo White, Pearl, White, Sandcastle, Swiss Coffee and Whisper.

Contractor’s Edge was developed specifically to meet the needs of contractors in the maintenance market who are looking for a line of interior paints designed for use in apartments and other rental properties. Contractor’s Edge is specifically formulated for maintenance projects on properly prepared and primed walls and ceilings, and is not intended for use with new housing construction.

Performance-wise, it provides good wet /dry hide and good scrubbability, the company said, and is a product line that’s perfect for contractors who need to control costs on a residential maintenance project.

Dunn-Edwards also recently introduced Block-It Premium, a new, high-performance stain-blocking primer made with a waterborne alkyd formula that provides adhesion, hide and stain-blocking properties. It is recommended for use on an array of previously painted or new interior and exterior surfaces.
Block-It Premium’s stain-blocking performance derives from utilizing waterborne alkyd resins, barrier-type pigments and stain-blocking additives that form a smooth, tight film over the stain, locking it in place and preventing it from migrating through the topcoat. This primer can be used on surfaces such as drywall, wood and acoustical ceilings. It is effective in hiding tough stains caused by food, grease, water or smoke damage, ballpoint or felt pen ink, lipstick, crayon and tannin bleeding on woods. Block-It Premium is eco-friendly and ethylene glycol (EG)-free.

Rust-Oleum Corporation has launched Zinsser Bondz Maximum Adhesion Primer, specifically formulated to bond any topcoat to difficult to paint surfaces. The fast drying urethane modified acrylic formula provides adhesion to hard, dense interior and exterior surfaces such as fiberglass, tile, glazed brick, aluminum, laminate and galvanized steel.
It creates a permanent bond with any topcoat including two-part epoxies and solvent-based paints. Bondz has exceptional flow and leveling and superior sag resistance, according to the company, and it exhibited eight times better resistance to wet adhesion loss than XIM UMA Bonder in ASTM D2486 and D6900 in independent lab tests, so it’s ideal for use in damp or humid exterior conditions, where ordinary primers can soften and lose adhesion. Bondz has a fast-drying formula that dries to the touch in 30 minutes and can be lightly sanded and topcoated in as little as two hours, saving time and money.

Benjamin Moore has created Eco Spec WB Silver, the first zero-VOC paint in the U.S. formulated with elemental silver and other EPA-approved antimicrobial additives that inhibit bacterial odors and mildew growth on the paint surface.

A premium commercial coating, Eco Spec WB Silver is the latest addition to the company’s Green Promise portfolio of paint products formulated with Benjamin Moore’s Gennex waterborne colorant system. The product remains zero-VOC even after tinting and no matter the color.
Eco Spec WB Silver’s mildew-resistant quality helps to extend the useful life of the coating. At the same time, it renders a dried paint film that resists mold, fungus and bacterial odors and is durable even after repeated washings, according to the company. And, like the original Eco Spec WB formulation, it is low-odor, zero-VOC yet available in any color, and remains VOC-free regardless the tint.
An ideal choice for projects applying for LEED credits, Eco Spec WB Silver is recommended for high-humidity locations and high-traffic commercial facilities such as hospitals, nursing homes, schools, dorms, day care, health and fitness centers, museums, restaurants, hotels, re sorts, government offices and military compounds. Eco Spec WB Silver is available in three finishes: flat, eggshell and semi-gloss. It is sold in single and five-gallon containers.

Another Benjamin Moore innovation rolled out recently is called Advance, an alkyd-based interior paint powered by the brand’s Gennex waterborne colorant system. “Advance is truly an alkyd, not a hybrid,” said Carl Minchew, director of product development for Benjamin Moore, who explained that the new product delivers all of the performance demanded of an oil-based paint, yet has other characteristics common to latex. “Advance cleans up with soap and water and is as green as they come, with a low-VOC content of less than 50 grams per liter, which is well below the 250 to 500 count for most other alkyds, and with significantly reduced odor.”

Advance reflects Benjamin Moore’s advance on the technology in many ways. A mineral versus petroleum

formulation of the alkyd is one of the key differentiators between Advance and the acrylic-based hybrids, according to the company.

It is the mineral-based formulation that enables the water dispersion of the Benjamin Moore tints. Another of the advantages of the Benjamin Moore Gennex tints is that they are VOC-free, so Advance is low-VOC even after the colorant is added, and regardless the color choice, which numbers more than 3,300. Custom color matching also is available.

Though alkyd paint typically is preferred for trims, doors, furniture wainscoting, chair rails, base moldings and cabinetry, Advance is also being marketed as a wall paint, as well, with a flat sheen and primer soon to be added to a range that initially includes satin and high gloss.

Muralo’s 563 interior and exterior primer has been reformulated to meet the growing market demand for high-performance eco-friendly products. This reformulation combines new green technology with 563’s time-tested features. Formulated with no harmful solvents, 563 is a water-based latex, based on a sustainable chemistry technology. It meets or exceeds Green Seal and LEED green building requirements.
This fast drying, virtually odorless, zero VOC primer/sealer is specified for space that is occupied during painting. It’s also ideal for nursing homes, schools, babies’ rooms and health care facilities, as well as the hotel/motel industries. 563 is recommended for use on all new or old interior surfaces and previously painted exterior surfaces in sound condition.
It’s especially effective on porous and uneven substrates such as drywall, tape joints, plaster and plastered spots. 563 is suitable for use under oil, alkyd or latex topcoats. 563 Painters Primer is certified by Coatings Research Group, Incorporated to meet environmentally determined performance standards established by CRGI’s ISO-accredited facility for specific product types and to meet or exceed the VOC requirements of LEED for most paint and coatings applications.

Benjamin Moore to power NJ-based R&D center with solar installation developed by Constellation Energy
Benjamin Moore and Constellation Energy have inaugurated a new solar power system that is expected to generate 68 percent of the electricity needs for Benjamin Moore’s 80,000 square foot product development center and testing laboratories.
The solar power system at the company’s Flanders, NJ, R&D facility comprises 8,600 crystalline photovoltaic solar panels, making it one of the largest on-site solar power systems in the state. The system is expected to begin producing electricity by year’s end.

Benjamin Moore & Co. teamed with the retail division of Constellation Energy to develop the 1.7-megawatt system. Under a 20-year solar power purchase agreement, Benjamin Moore is providing the land and will purchase all of the electricity from the solar panels. Constellation Energy will build, own and maintain the system.

“Benjamin Moore proudly wears the mantle of product innovator while embracing a stringent commitment to our planet—working diligently to ensure that our products and operations minimally impact the environment,” said Denis Abrams, chairman, president and CEO of Benjamin Moore & Co. “Now we are embracing a commitment to renewable energy through our joint endeavor with Constellation Energy. We know that no one action or company will create the single solution to our energy needs. But this installation by Constellation Energy for Benjamin Moore, on our property, contributes to the overall global solution of sustainable energy resources that are sorely needed.”

The long-term solar power purchase agreement structure enables Benjamin Moore to undertake renewable energy generation with no upfront capital expenditure. Depending on conditions, the system is expected to produce nearly 2,230,000 kilowatt hours of electricity each year, enough to supply 68 percent of the electricity of the facility. Benjamin Moore and Constellation Energy are also exploring new energy conservation measures at the Flanders site to further reduce the facility’s overall electricity usage so that it can rely almost exclusively on the power generated by the solar array.

The project is the first of its kind to be located in the New Jersey Highlands region under a recently enacted state law. Constellation Energy and Benjamin Moore worked closely with state and community authorities to ensure that the solar installation fully met the open space and water drainage requirements of the Highlands Water Protection and Planning Act of 2004 which needed to be amended to accommodate this project. The system design was adjusted to shift more than 1,500 photovoltaic panels from an open field on the property to a newly installed roof structure over the facility’s existing parking lot. The final design preserves more open space on Benjamin Moore’s land while providing shade for parked vehicles. The parking structure will also include recharging stations for electric vehicles.

Constellation Energy estimates that using non-renewable sources to generate the same amount of electricity expected to be produced by the new solar installation would result in the release of more than 1,600 metric tons of carbon dioxide, a greenhouse gas, or the equivalent emissions from more than 300 passenger vehicles annually. The system is the latest example of Benjamin Moore’s commitment to sustainability, which includes delivering safer, sustainable products to its customers.

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