Combining latest generation waterborne coatings with established high solid coatings, Axalta’s Harmonized Coating Technologies aim to meet the emerging needs of light vehicle original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) to achieve more sustainable and efficient car manufacturing.
At SURCAR Shanghai, Axalta will debut two new application systems for customers in China under the Harmonized Coating Technologies umbrella: an upgraded 3-Wet Waterborne system and High Solid 2-Wet Monocoat system. Each system responds to different customer needs for high-performance, quality and flexibility. The systems share the ability to reduce the number of bake/flash steps needed for curing and are designed to deliver full-layer performance. As part of the portfolio of Harmonized Coating Technologies, the patented and patent-pending Eco-Concept primer-less coating system is also presented at Axalta’s booth, representing one of the most advanced waterborne coating processes today.
“Sustainability is at the core of Axalta’s innovation and business development, and sustainability is a key value we share with customers,” said Luke Lu, Vice President of Axalta and President of Axalta’s operations in China. “At Axalta, we believe Harmonized Coating Technologies are a concrete example of how we are putting that philosophy into practice to provide tangible benefits to customers here in China.”
Axalta’s Eco-Concept process is designed to reduce OEM investments and operation expenses up to 20 percent when compared to conventional water-borne coating processes while also lowering energy use and emissions. It is especially suitable for waterborne coating production lines and in shifting from medium-solid solventborne production lines to waterborne coating lines.
The upgraded 3-Wet Waterborne system uses a specially developed water-based coating formulation that enables successive coats to be applied on top of prior coats while still wet or requiring only an ambient (minimal flash) dry step between coats. The process is designed to further reduce the bake steps and save energy.
The 2-Wet Monocoat system is designed to increase productivity with reduced energy use and paint shop footprint. It combines the paint performance of a clearcoat-over-basecoat system with the productivity of a monocoat process. With this advanced technology, coating applications can be reduced from three to two and the number of baking steps from two to one. The monocoat appearance is achieved with a hyper-branched acrylic polymer formulated to provide high quality appearance and durability. Advanced weathering tests conducted by Axalta have shown that paint applied with this 2-wet technology retains as much as 90 percent of its gloss after four years.
Axalta has been operating in China since 1984, and this experience enables Axalta to maintain its leadership role in developing innovative, cutting-edge coating products. In addition to the recently-opened Jiading waterborne coatings facility, Axalta operates an adjacent plant in Jiading, a plant in Changchun, six powder coating operations in collaboration with its joint venture partner, four refinish training centers, and a Global Color Lab. Axalta also operates its Asia Pacific Innovation Center and its Asia Pacific Regional Headquarters in Shanghai.