Smart functional coatings—like self-healing, self-cleaning, damage reporting or responsiveness to changes in the environment—provide additional functionality over traditional coatings. In addition, adaptive functionalities such as changes in color, surface texture, or barrier properties, provide attractive features for end-users in everyday life
So far, such adaptive functionalities have not taken the step beyond research laboratories into final consumer products. Proof of-concept methodologies are environmentally toxic, not scalable, incompatible with industrial (waterborne) formulations, or not meeting respective quality standards. In this multilateral program, we will design, synthesize, and assemble novel chemical building blocks with inherent adaptable functionalities and assemble these to yield smart coatings with incorporated functionalities. A particular focus will be the development of:
- sustainably sourced supramolecular/dynamic covalent coatings
- (responsive) structural color coatings.
The building blocks, assembly strategies, and final coatings produced in this multi-lateral program will not only match current industry-standards but have the potential to transform the coating industry, providing the coatings of the future and facilitating the materials transition