Superhydrophobic spray NeverWet enters
US market in a $20 can
Two step spray coating makes fabrics, wood, metals and
A spray on treatment that makes any object repel liquid has
been launched into the US market. This is NeverWet, a
superhydrobphobic coating that can be applied to nearly any
Consumers can now buy the two cans (capable of treating 10 to
15 square feet) for $19.97 from Home Depot. Surfaces that the
spray can be applied to include fabrics, wood, metal and
plastics. The treatement consists of two coatings, each of
which takes 30 minutes to dry.
NeverWet have not yet given official figures on how long the
superhydrophobia will last in various situations, but claim
that treatments have “remained under seawater for over a year
and reemerged completely dry.”
Unfortunately, when the treatment is applied to glass it
causes the surface to become frosted, though the company
behind the product promise that a clear-drying version is in
A demonstration video (below) shows NeverWet in action,
including waterproofing an iPhone (something that instructions
for NeverWet explicitly warns against), a toilet brush, a
t-shirt and a pair of shoes.
Superhydrophobic surfaces works by increasing the contact
angle between water droplets and the coated surface through
creating a low surface chemistry and a smooth surface –
essentially this changes whether each individual droplet
remains a ball when it rests on a surface, or whether it
Hydrophilic surfaces (surfaces that soak up water) have a
contact angle of less than 90 degrees. Hydrophobic surfaces
have a contact angle of above 90 degrees, but superhydrophobic
surfaces have a contact angel of above 150 degrees.
NeverWet coatings creating a contact angle of between 160 and
175 degrees (by comparison, the non-stick coating on a Teflon
pan is a 95 degrees contact angle). These are hard concepts to
understand without talking about surface tension and why water
molecules want to minimise their exposure to what is
For a great video explanation via MIT click here.
Ross Nanotechnology's NeverWet
superhydrophobic spray-on ...
NeverWet: Superhydrophobic Coatings
At NeverWet, we have developed a super hydrophobic coating
that completely repels water and heavy oils. Any object coated
with our NeverWet™ coating literally cannot be touched by
liquid. Any liquid placed on this coating is repelled and
simply rolls off without touching the underlying surface. Not
only is this amazing to see, but it solves a myriad of
Address: P.O. Box 646, Leola, PA 17540
When these guys say NeverWet ... they
For one Lancaster County company, necessity was indeed the
mother of invention.
About three years ago, Ross Technology Corp. needed a better
way to reduce corrosion on the steel products it makes here.
When they couldn't find a suitable one, they worked on
creating something on their own.
And eventually they hit upon a slick product that's led to a
whole new business.
That product is NeverWet, a silicon-based spray-on coating
that repels water and heavy oils.
"When we started getting it to work, we realized it solved a
lot of problems rather than just corrosion," said Andy Jones,
who leads the new effort.
Jones is the president of Ross Nanotechnology, the subsidiary
of Ross Technology Corp. that was formed to develop NeverWet.
The company now employs 12 scientists, chemists and engineers.
They work out of a lab at the Ross Technology headquarters in
the Conestoga Valley Industrial Park.
In addition to fighting corrosion, NeverWet's nano-particle
coating keeps things clean, dry and free of bacteria and ice.
Jones said that once they found a coating that worked on
metal, they created different formulations that adhere better
to other surfaces, including clothing, plastics and cookware.
The cookware formulation also was tweaked so it can better
handle high temperatures.
"Anywhere you don't want corrosion, or ice or things to get
wet, this works well," Jones said.
"When you start thinking about it, there are a lot of places
where that's good."
Jones quickly mentioned a number of additional possibilities.
NeverWet could make ovens, toilet plungers and bed pans a
cinch to clean, packaging resist water and white boards free
of "ghost" images, he said.
Another application is safeguarding electronics.
"I sprayed my iPhone with NeverWet, submerged it in a foot of
water for 30 minutes, took it out and it was good to go,"
Ross Nanotechnology isn't the only organization that likes
what it sees in NeverWet.
In June, NeverWet won the top prize at InventHelp's INPEX
trade show in Pittsburgh. NeverWet also won a gold medal in
the science category.
The event showcases new products and innovations that are
available for business and industry to manufacture, license or
Jones said Ross Nanotechnology began licensing the NeverWet
technology to other manufacturers about two years ago.
It has sold four licenses to date and has numerous deals under
discussion with potential licensees who'd use it on the
products they manufacture.
The decision is a time- and labor-intensive exercise.
"Everybody has their own processes, so it takes a year or more
of testing (before they decide whether to use NeverWet),"
"That's the painful part of this business."
Ross Nanotechnology is focusing on a handful of niche markets,
Though declining to disclose Ross Nanotechnology's sales
figures, Jones said the company is "small now but growing
And, Jones said he expects to see some significant product
launches in early 2012.
These would include the first retail version of NeverWet for
use by consumers.
During a recent visit to the company's headquarters, Jones
showed off NeverWet's capabilities in what seemed like a
series of magic tricks.
On hard surfaces such as glass and ceramic that were treated
with NeverWet, water turned into nearly spherical balls that
shot in all directions.
A cotton shirt shed water. A canvas shoe repelled chocolate
syrup and was left perfectly white.
"Shoe people are all over us," eager to buy a NeverWet
license. "If you pay $200 for a pair of shoes, you want them
to stay clean," he said.
Ross Nanotechnology has yet to license NeverWet to a shoe
manufacturer, though, Jones said.
What's the secret behind NeverWet?
NeverWet — which has 13 patents pending — works much as
Scotchgard does in protecting furniture, carpets and other
surfaces. That is, it creates a very high contact angle for
water on a surface, Jones explained.
A drop of water that lies flat on a surface has a contact
angle of zero percent, but if the droplet forms into a perfect
circle, it has an angle of 180 degrees.
Human skin provides a surface angle of 75 to 90 degrees, Jones
said. Car wax provides a surface angle of about 95 degrees.
Scotchgard has an angle as high as 116 degrees.
In contrast, NeverWet has a contact angle as high as 165
degrees, which means water forms an almost perfect sphere.
Because of that shape, the water is repelled.
Materials scientist Vinod Sikka, Ross Nanotechnology's
director of research and development, played a key role in
inventing NeverWet, Jones said.
Sikka previously spent 34 years at Oak Ridge National
Laboratory, where he became manager of research and technology
But having a superior product alone isn't enough to guarantee
commercial success, Jones points out.
"It's challenging to break into the coatings market. People
have been using the same stuff from the same suppliers for a
long time," he said.
Jones sees lots of potential for NeverWet, though.
"It is very novel, and when you start thinking about it, you
can think about how transformative the technology can be,"
Jones said. "You can use it everywhere."
This superhydrophobic coating is truly
After reading this article, prepare to
say to yourself, "I'm living in the future."
A superhydrophobic spray-on coating set to launch next year
could dramatically change our perception of the phrase "water
NeverWet is a patent-pending silicon-based covering that
deflects nearly all liquids and heavy oils by creating a very
high contact angle upon application. The angle is much higher
than traditional substrates, such as car wax (90 degrees),
Teflon (95 degrees), or Rain-X (110 degrees). Liquid literally
glides off NeverWet's 160 degree to 175 degree angle in a way
that almost seems like computer animation, as seen in the
Left: Contact angles of various surfaces. Right: A droplet
sitting on a the superhydrophobic surface of a lotus leaf,
which is extremely difficult to get wet.
(Credit: Ross Nanotechnologies)
At first glance, the mind-bending NeverWet comes across as a
liquid repellent, but it is much more than that. Surfaces that
are sprayed with NeverWet repel ice, corrosion, and even
bacteria. The company behind the product, Ross
Nanotechnologies, says on its Web site that the material does
not fade in strength from blasts of high pressure. In fact, it
even states that NeverWet-infused materials "have remained
under seawater for over a year and reemerged completely dry."
A dramatic video by the company also demonstrates something
unbelievable: a waterproof iPhone. A video shows an iPhone
covered in NeverWet, sitting in a bowl of water for 30
minutes, remaining fully functional the entire time it is
submerged. Other potential applications include a variety of
objects and places, such as shoes, electrical equipment,
clothing, hospitals, bathroom products, and much more.
Lancaster Online has an informative interview with several of
the people behind NeverWet, including co-inventor Vinod Sikka.
He admits to the Pennsylvania newspaper, "It's challenging to
break into the coatings market. People have been using the
same stuff from the same suppliers for a long time. It is very
novel, and when you start thinking about it, you can think
about how transformative the technology can be," Jones said.
"You can use it everywhere."
COMPOSITION AND COATING FOR SUPERHYDROPHOBIC PERFORMANCE
Inventor: SIKKA VINOD // HURLEY MICHAEL
Applicant: ROSS TECHNOLOGY CORP
The present disclosure describes compositions comprising an
acrylic polymer binder and nano-particles less than about
100nm that provide a hydrophobic or superhydrophobic coating
that may also display oleophobicity. The coating composition
may advantageously be prepared using VOC exempt compounds that
are compatible with a variety of surface materials including
many electronic components. In addition, the coating
composition may also be rapidly dried rendering it useful for
the rapid preparation of coated objects and surfaces in
manufacturing/assembly line environments.
SUPERHYDROPHOBIC AND OLEOPHOBIC COATINGS WITH LOW VOC
Inventor: GESFORD JOSH // HURLEY PHILIP
Coating compositions for the preparation of superhydrophobic
(SH) and/or oleophobic (OP) surfaces that employ low amounts
of volatile organic compounds are described. Also described
are the resulting coatings/coated surfaces and methods of
their preparation. Such coatings/surfaces have a variety of
uses, including their ability to prevent or resist water, dirt
and/or ice from attaching to a surface.
The superhydrophobic (SH) and superoleophobic surfaces are
defined as those where water or oil droplet contact angles
exceed 150[deg.]. Such surfaces have a variety of uses,
including their ability to prevent or resist water, dirt
and/or ice from attaching to a surface. A variety of
hydrophobic and oleophobic surface coating compositions have
been described that employ high amounts of volatile organic
compounds (VOCs) including those that participate in
atmospheric photochemical reactions. Those contrast with the
coating compositions described herein that utilize water
and/or VOC- exempt organic solvents that have been found to
undergo limited amounts of atmospheric photochemical reactions
and lower amounts of photochemically active VOCs.
This disclosure sets forth coating compositions that employ
water-based binder systems that have a low VOC content and/or
low non-exempt VOC content, thereby providing a variety of
environmental benefits in their application. The coating
compositions described herein remain substantially
hydrophobic/oleophobic even when abraded, and have increased
durability and/or life span when subjected to normal wear and
tear compared to coatings where hydrophobic and/or oleophobic
components are restricted to the coating's surfaces.
LOW VOC COATINGS
Compositions for forming hydrophobic and/or oleophobic
coatings described in this disclosure include one-step
compositions that employ water-based polyurethanes (or
combinations of water based polyurethanes) as a binder in
combination with one or more types of second particles. The
compositions set forth in this disclosure may optionally
include one or more types of first particles in addition to
The low VOC coating compositions described herein provide
coatings that do not lose hydrophobicity and/or oleophobicity
when their surface is abraded. As the coatings do not lose
hydrophobicity and/or oleophobicity when abraded, the coatings
permit thickness to be used as the basis to increase the
abrasion resistance and durability.
To reduce the amount of VOC's, particularly non-exempt VOC's,
that are released from coating compositions used to prepare
hydrophobic and/or oleophobic coatings, water-based (also
denoted as waterborne) binders may be used to prepare coating
compositions that result in SH and/or OP coatings, including
water-based polyurethanes (e.g., water-based polyurethane
dispersions (PUDs), emulsions, and/or suspension).
In addition to low volatile organic compound content,
water-based polyurethanes permit the formation of hydrophobic
and/or oleophobic coatings that remain substantially
hydrophobic and/or oleophobic even after substantial surface
abrasion. Moreover, water-based polyurethanes offer mechanical
flexibility, size/dimensional stability of the dried and cured
coating, and they can resist embrittlement due to heat and/or
light exposure. UV curable versions of water-based
polyurethanes (e.g., PUDs) are also available that avoid the
need to heat cure coatings, which is economically and
environmentally desirable due to reduced energy expenditure
associated with light cureable coating applications relative
to those requiring or whose curing is enhanced by heating.
1.1 Water-Based Polyurethanes As Binders
A wide variety of water-based polyurethanes (polyurethane
coating compositions comprising more than insubstantial
amounts of water as a solvent and/or diluent) may be used to
prepare hydrophobic and/or oleophobic coatings described
herein. Polyurethanes are polymers consisting of a chain of
organic units joined by urethane (carbamate) linkages.
Polyurethane polymers are typically formed through
polymerization of at least one type of monomer containing at
least two isocyanate functional groups with at least one other
monomer containing at least two hydroxyl (alcohol) groups. A
catalyst may be employed to speed the polymerization reaction.
Other components may be present in the polyurethane coating
compositions to impart desirable properties including, but not
limited to, surfactants and other additives that bring about
the carbamate forming reaction(s) yielding a coating of the
desired properties in a desired cure time.
In some embodiments, the polyurethane employed in the durable
coatings may be formed from a polyisocyanate and a mixture of
-OH (hydroxyl) and NH (amine) terminated monomers. In such
systems the polyisocyanate can be a trimer or homopolymer of
hexamethylene diisocyanate (HDI).
HDI Trimer Polyalcohol Polyurethane
Some solvents compatible with such systems include water,
n-butyl acetate, toluene, xylene, ethyl benzene,
cyclohexanone, isopropyl acetate, N-methyl pyrrolidone, and
methyl isobutyl ketone and mixtures thereof; although not all
of these solvents are VOC-exempt.
A variety of water-based (waterborne) polyurethane
compositions may be employed for the preparation of
hydrophobic, SH and/or oleophobic surfaces may be employed.
Among the commercial water-based polyurethanes that may be
employed in the preparation of SH and OP surfaces are those
that comprise polycarbonate, polyester, polyethers and/or
polyacrylic urethanes, and their aliphatic counterparts
(aliphatic polyester urethane resins, aliphatic polycarbonate
urethane resins, and/or aliphatic acrylic urethanes. The
structures of some examples of polyacrylic urethanes,
polyester urethanes, and polycarbonate urethanes are provided
EXAMPLE 3: VARIATION ON SECOND PARTICLE CONTENT IN A
ONE-STEP COATINGS PREPARED WITH BAYHYDROL(R) 140AQ/CLEAR
700T BINDER AND CAB-O-SIL(R) TS720 RANGING FROM 11-20%
A 60:40 mixture of BAYHYDROL(R) 1.40AQ and clear POLANE(R)
700T (F63V521) by volume was prepared using those products as
distributed by their ma ufacturers. TO 40 g amounts of each
mixture was added 4.4, 6.0, and 8.0 g (i.e., 11%, 15%, and
20%) of CAB-O- SIL TS720. Also added to each mixture was 20-g
(50%) water. All percentages are calculated and based on 100 g
of 60:40 mixture. The compositions were each mixed using steel
balls or a low impact mixer.
Each mixture was sprayed (using an air gun) on 4x 4-in square
steel plates at five different thicknesses. All of the plates
were air-dried for 30 niin prior to drying in an oven at
200[deg.]F for 30-40 min. Each plate was subjected to
thickness measurement, surface roughness measurement (Ra and
Rz values), and wear resistance using a Taber abrader (Taber
abrasion). All Taber abrasion measurements were obtained using
250-g load and CS10 wheels. Data are summarized in Table 5 and
plotted in Figs. 6-8. Figures 6 and shows the plot of surface
roughness, Ra and Rz values respectively. Figure 8 shows Taber
data as a function of coating thickness.
EXAMPLE 9: A ONE-STEP COATING COMPOSITION YIELDING
SUPERHYDROPHOBIC AND OLEOPHOBIC COATINGS
A coating composition comprising:
BAYHYDROL(R) 124 - 24.0 grams
POLANE(R) 700T (white) - 16.0 grams
M5T = 9.0 grams (Cab-o-Sil M5 silica treated with
Nonafluorohexyl)trichlorosilane (SIN 6597.6) as described
Corvel Black - 2.8 grams and
H20 - 20.0 grams
was prepared by blending the components as follows:
BAYHYDROL(R) 124 (24.0 grams) and POLANE(R) 700T (16.0 grams)
were blended together for 20 minutes. The addition of M5T (9.0
grams, M5 silica treated with
(3, 3,4,4,5,5,6,6, 6-Nonafluorohexyl)trichlorosilane (SIN
6597.6)) to the solution was followed by mixing in a ball mill
for 30 minutes. Addition of Corvel Black (2.8 grams) and H20
(20.0 grams) to the solution was followed by an additional 30
minutes of mixing in a ball mill.
The coating was applied using a Central Pneumatic spray gun
with the nozzle size of 0.020-0.025 inches. A coating
thickness of 1.2-1.4 mils was applied to a 4 x 4 inch
Al-plate. The plate was cured at room temperature for 30
minutes followed by curing at 200F for 1-2 hours. After
curing, the plates were tested for superhydrophobicity,
oleophobicity, Taber abrasion resistance, and shower
resistance to loss of superhydrophobicity. The results of the
tests show the coating displays superhydrophobicity (contact
angle = 167.33, after Taber abrasion testing = (155.23). The
coatings also display oleophobic/superoleophobic behavior
(contact angle = 153.67). The coating lost its
superhydrophobicity after 500 Taber abrasion cycles with a
250gram load. Superhydrophobicity is lost after 55-60 minutes
in shower testing (described above); however,
superhydrophobicity returns after drying.
HIGHLY DURABLE SUPERHYDROPHOBIC, OLEOPHOBIC AND ANTI-ICING
COATINGS AND METHODS AND COMPOSITIONS FOR THEIR PREPARATION
Inventor: BLEECHER DOUGLAS // HARSH PHILIP
ANTI-ICING SUPERHYDROPHOBIC COATINGS
Inventor: GAO DI // JONES ANDREW
SUPERHYDROPHOBIC COATING OF A POLYMER
NONWOVEN, IN PARTICULAR A POLYPROPYLENE NONWOVEN
Inventor(s): BROCH-NIELSEN THOMAS [DK];
BONDERGAARD JENS [DK]; BESENBACHER FLEMMING [DK]; KINGSHOTT
PETER [DK]; MOELGAARD SOEREN [DK] +
Also published as: DE102005051550
(A1) US2009227164 (A1) DE112006002245 (A5)
The invention relates to a superhydrophic coating of
a nonwoven. According to the invention, the nonwoven material
is coated with a sponge-type net structure in the micro and
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