From automotive components, oil and gas pipelines, agriculture and heavy equipment, to water and wastewater pipelines, industrial liquid coatings have become the high-performance cornerstone to provide superior corrosion protection and reliable mechanical strength. The industry is focusing on new innovations and technologies as customers continue to exhibit demand for high quality and durable products. In terms of revenue, the global industrial liquid coatings market size is expected to surpass US$70 billion by 2025.
With environmentally friendly liquid coatings witnessing a compelling trend in the past several years, environmental initiatives to reduce CO2 emissions, volatile organic compound (VOC) emissions and energy cost have gained a noticeable uptick.
Coatings producers are striving to meet global demand and trends with the introduction of antimicrobial technology to provide extra protection against the growth of microorganisms on coated surfaces. The year 2021 has demanded more agility and flexibility as companies strive to bolster their R&D activities. Scientific research into light, color and paint will potentially be at the core of stakeholders’ business strategies to gain a competitive edge.
While antimicrobial liquid coating has been around for a long time, it has gained considerable impetus in 2020, the trend is poised to continue for the next five years or so. With the fallout of COVID-19 becoming palpable in metal, glass, fabric and plastic surfaces, traction for antimicrobial industrial coating may surge.
AkzoNobel joined hands with Rijksmuseum in February 2020 to design custom color calibration to enhance the photography and digitization of paintings and boost the viewing experience. In July 2020, Nippon Paint rolled out a new range of industrial paints as it aims to provide end-to-end solutions providing better protection, higher productivity and enhanced performance. They assert that the new product will keep up with the industrial standards of chemical resistance, corrosion protection, and performance and appearance.
Acrylic Coatings—an Exceptional Bonding Material
Amidst changing regulations and policies, acrylic water-based solutions have come to the fore as a viable solution. Companies such as BASF have upped their investment in acrylic coating solutions, emphasizing adhesion to difficult surfaces.
Adding the wow factor is liquid metal coating that makes finishes user-friendly and sustainable. Industry players have exhibited traction for the use of acrylic resins and will remain at the forefront in product finishes for OEMs such as automotive companies.
Liquid coatings such as thermoplastic and waterborne have become the talk of the town and are likely to be highly sought-after in the next five years. For instance, thermoplastic acrylic polymers (TPA) have been witnessing a pressing demand in the automotive industry.
Acrylic liquid coating has spurred the trend as an exceptional bonding material that goes well with the majority of construction materials, including PVC pipe and concrete, metal and concrete, and wood and concrete.
Epoxy Resins to Remain At the Helm
Of late, epoxy resins have become the catalyst in protecting steel and concrete given that they are solvent-free and can be used in tanks without the requirement to provide special ventilation. Some of the usage areas such as sugar refineries, oil refineries, paper mills, power stations and other liquid containment areas have become the major recipients of epoxy resins.
Expanding footfall of epoxy resins is primarily attributed to high chemical resistance, waterproof and protective, solvent-free, high-build coating and high-temperature water resistance. They are innately designed to provide relentless protection for substrates, such as mortar and concrete.
Penetration of liquid coatings for repair works and laminating in the auto sector will further add value to the footprint of epoxy resins. It is worth mentioning that epoxy polyamine primer has become highly desirable for protective use on metal, machinery, marine equipment and one-coat protective finishes. augured well for stakeholders gearing to bolster their industrial liquid coatings portfolios.
Hempel rolled out a new epoxy primer coating solution in May 2019 for heavy-duty equipment and trucks. The new coating is designed to boost productivity and quality for OEMs by maximizing service life and minimizing production times.
Stakeholders are buoyed by the fact that epoxy coatings tend to provide, more often than not, tremendous adhesion to substrates and ferrous metals that offer long-term corrosion resistance in hostile environments. Epoxy resins will continue to gain popularity as a revenue-boosting portfolio for suppliers of liquid coatings to end-users of heavy-duty equipment, including excavators, forklifts, earth moving equipment and harvesters.
Bird’s Eye View On E-Coating: Why Is It So Appealing?
E-coating is here to stay. Used as a primer or undercoat, e-coating provides tremendous protection against corrosion and boosts adhesion. Over the years, e-coating has arguably become a natural fit in a slew of industries against the backdrop of its low cost and effectiveness.
More and more industries are opting for electrocoating in the manufacturing of heavy equipment, fasteners, switch gears and other metal products that demand superior corrosion protection and improved edged protection.
Aimed at achieving low-cost, high-quality finishes, reduced finishing costs and performance upsides have made e-coating a flourishing technology. Ideal for agriculture and automotive industries, cathodic epoxy e-coating provides superior humidity and corrosion resistance.
Since the process produces little or no VOCs or hazardous air pollutants (HAPs), and complements OSHA and EPA, leading companies are likely to infuse funds in e-coating. For instance, Axalta introduced edge protection electrocoat in December 2020 to provide superior corrosion protection and high productivity.
The company exhorts the product will help meet the growing demand for e-coating in agriculture, general industry, construction and earthmoving equipment (ACE) sectors, and meet environmental constraints, including REACH compliance.
PPG announced on January 11,2021 that it has inked an agreement to acquire Wӧrwag. The acquisition is believed to help PPG expand its portfolio in liquid coating offerings. Meanwhile in March 2019, PPG launched electrocoat in North America with low VOC emissions and high film build. The company claims the e-coat will leverage coaters to render corrosion performance services on high-profile substrates and a slew of pretreatments.
The post-COVID situation will potentially re-ignite growth and enthuse confidence among industrial stakeholders, including upstream, midstream and downstream companies in the oil and gas pipeline industry, while industry players in automotive, agriculture and heavy equipment will look to provide solutions for major customer needs, such as superior performance and enhanced productivity.
It wouldn’t be too naïve to assert that productivity, performance, innovations and environmental adherence will be seen as four main pillars fostering synergies and driving the demand for industrial liquid coating products.