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Adhesion Failure

Adhesion failure can occur when coatings/paint have been applied incorrectly or the substrate has not been prepared in the correct way.

Surface analysis techniques can be utilized to investigate adhesion problems by way of a locus of failure study. This type of study involves analyzing both sides of the failure.


Case Study:

Paints & Organic Coatings Disbondment

Protective and decorative coatings are essential to our lifestyles but they sometimes fail. Such failures can prove expensive and the establishment of responsibilities is critical to satisfactory resolution of litigation cases.

In this example coating failure has occurred on the inside of an enormous water storage tank and the whole coating had to be replaced but whose fault was it?

Was it the fault of:

  • the coating applicator?
  • the tank manufacturer or their suppliers?
  • the coating materials supplier?
  • the supplier of e.g. special additive “X” to give better water repellency?

The mechanism and cause of the coating failure was determined using a range of surface analysis methods including XPS, ToF SIMS and Dynamic SIMS.

This involved the following steps:

  • investigating where the failure occurred in the coating system.
  • identifying the failure mode (e.g. interfacial (adhesive), cohesive, weak interfacial layer) by surface chemical analysis at the locus of failure.
  • Estimation of failure kinetics
  • Research into remedial action.
  • Preparation of Expert Reports.

Lucideon scientists proved that migration of a chemical additive from within the paint layer had occurred, resulting in the weakening of the concrete / paint adhesion and subsequent coating disbondment.

CAUSE: Wrong choice of epoxide hardener.

The coating material supplier was at fault.

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