Testing and Formulation of Icephobic Coatings – UROP Spring Symposium 2021

Testing and Formulation of Icephobic Coatings

Michael Zahran


Research Mentor(s): Michael Gurin, CEO
Research Mentor School/College/Department: Hygratek
Presentation Date: Thursday, April 22, 2021
Session: Session 4 (2pm-2:50pm)
Breakout Room: Room 20
Presenter: 3

Event Link


The buildup of ice on surfaces can be detrimental to the performance of essential infrastructures, technologies, and transportation systems such as aircrafts, ships, turbines, powerlines, and more. Icephobic coatings can act as a shield against the accumulation of ice on surfaces, providing a cost-effective way of protecting the integrity and safety of systems and reducing or eliminating potential maintenance costs created by ice damage. There are numerous combinations of reagents, solvents, and catalysts that, when reacted together, form a product exhibiting icephobic properties. An ideal icephobic coating will have an ice adhesion strength, defined as the force required to debond a specified area of ice from a substrate, of less than 100 kPa. Additionally, it is desired for these coatings to be optically clear and to have fast curing, or drying, rates. The purpose of this research is to find a formula that provides low ice adhesion strength, optimal optical properties, and a fast curing rate. Low adhesion strength and clear coatings are relatively simple to produce, but these properties in conjunction with a fast curing rate (ideally of just a few minutes) poses a challenge. Making use of polyurethane as the base polymer for icephobicity, the amounts and choices of reagents, solvents, and catalysts were changed to produce different formulas. Ice adhesion numbers were tested for all samples, and the samples were compared to one another to determine which gave the most desired results. By changing the amounts of one variable (such as solvent, catalyst, oil, or diisocyanate amount) and keeping all others constant, the affect that each variable has on the icephobic properties of the formula could be studied.

Authors: Michael Zahran
Research Method: Laboratory Research

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