Antifouling performance is being enhanced

The biocide, Selektope, is being introduced into marine antifouling coatings to enhance the performance of self-polishing co-polymer (SPC) marine coatings. I-Tech’s team of R&D scientists have been working on the technology for the last five years and say they have discovered new ways in which the first-of-its-kind biocide, Selektope can be introduced to marine antifouling coatings in combination with other biocides with little or no effect on formulation chemistry or performance.

The technology works by improving the dispersion of the active substance via adsorption to paint pigment particles. And the scientists say positive static test results have also provided proof of concept that Selektope can be used in silicone-based foul release coatings, a new application area for the technology.

Selektope is an organic, non-metal biocide that prevents hard fouling, repelling barnacle larvae from a coated surface. The controlled release of Selektope in SPC coatings has proved successful using traditional methods with multiple products commercialised to-date, however, I-Tech says its R&D efforts have focussed on further improving the controlled release of the technology and minimising any issues catalysed through the introduction of Selektope into a paint matrix.

“This work is significant for two reasons; enhancing the current use of Selektope in SPC coating types and, opening up new routes for us to explore the use of this novel technology in foul release coatings,” said Dr Markus Hoffmann, technical director at I-Tech.


“The fact that the addition of Selektope, pre-adsorbed on pigment particles does not require fundamental paint reformulation makes this R&D progression even more impactful since it can be adopted immediately by our customers.”

And he said that following two years of R&D work, I-Tech has obtained proof of concept that if Selektope is pre-adsorbed on a carrier compound, antifouling performance is improved, owing to the improved dispersion of the biocide in the paint matrix.

“Our next steps will be to expand our knowledge base,” said Dr Hoffmann. “We will also conduct further work to refine the process of adsorbing Selektope on zinc oxide and explore other pigments as potential carriers.”

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