AkzoNobel has developed breakthrough coatings technology that enables soft, tactile finishes to be applied to consumer electronics using lighter shades such as white and silver. Known as DuraSilk UV, the soft-feel coating solves a long-standing stain resistance issue associated with soft-feel coatings, which has so far restricted the use of such tactile finishes to only darker colors. The new technology also cures at lower temperatures, resulting in less energy use.

“Traditional soft coatings have a rough surface that picks up stains such as coffee, so they can only be used on darker-colored basecoats,” explains Ted Rhee, Sales Manager at AkzoNobel’s Specialty Finishes business.

“Our UV-cured coatings technology is more resistant to stains, which means that soft-feel effects can now be used over lighter-colored basecoats. The UV curing aspect also allows them to cure at lower temperatures, so they can now be used with less-expensive plastics.”

Due to the environmental benefits brought about by the lower carbon footprint associated with the coating process, designers are extremely enthusiastic because DuraSilk UV gives them so many new color options.

 “It definitely gives us an edge over the competition,” adds Ted “and also means that consumers will find a lot more color choice in their soft-feel finish when they look to buy new electronics such as notebooks, tablets and smartphones.”