The project aims to develop new strategies for the rapid and scalable fabrication of structurally colored pigments that are compatible with sustainable waterborne coatings while maintaining industry-standard performance.
Structural color is a result of nanoscale ordered structures that interact with light, providing benefits such as resistance to fading and environmental pollution. However, reliable scale-up of these pigments is challenging due to long assembly times and the necessity for uniform particle size. To overcome these challenges, the project will explore ways to speed and scale-up colloidal assembly using dynamic polymeric gels and naturally sourced monomers. Specific additives and stimuli-responsive units will also be embedded in the polymeric matrix to optimize and tune the structural color.