Development and Analysis of Self-Decontaminating Coatings




Lundin, Jeffrey George

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Chemical warfare agents (CWAs) are amongst the deadliest known chemicals. Despite international agreements which ban their use, threats posed by CWAs remain high, especially considering recent global events.1, 2 Although commonly referred to as poison gases, CWAs are most often liquids, which exhibit degradation half-lives on the order of days to several weeks, depending on conditions, classifying them as persistent threats.3 Therefore, following their dispersion, the most likely mode of exposure an individual will encounter is contact with residual agent on a contaminated surface. To reduce the risk, this research incorporated novel catalytic additives into commercial military urethane coatings, thereby imparting continuous self-decontamination to any paintable surface. An ideal self-decontaminating coating must quickly detoxify harmful surface residing chemical agents, maintain the integrity of the original surface and be cost effective. Novel organic and organometallic additives were designed, synthesized and incorporated into commercial resin systems at low loadings. Additives selected for the investigation included fullerene, cyclodextrin, and polyoxometalate compounds. CWA simulants employed in the examination of surface reactivity included 2-chloroethyl ethyl sulfide, 2-chloroethyl phenyl sulfide, Demeton-S and Malathion. Upon illumination with visible light, the fullerene containing coatings exhibited photocatalytic degradation of CWA simulants on the surface, which resulted in oxidation by-products. Continuously active, catalytic self-decontaminating coating surfaces with activity against CWA simulants were developed and demonstrated without significant alterations to the coating’s physical properties.



Decontamination, C60 Fullerenc, Reactive Coatings, Simulants, Polyurethane, Self-decontamination