Novel Thermoset Siloxane-Urethane Fouling Release Coatings (RFT-197)

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Invention Summary


The adherence of organisms to surfaces exposed to aquatic environments (fouling) is a major economic concern, particularly in the maritime shipping industry. Fouling on ships can increase fuel consumption by up to 40%. Coatings that prevent fouling currently exist but are an environmental concern due to their release of toxic levels of tin and copper.

Scientists at NDSU have invented a novel non-toxic, cross-linked thermoset polysiloxane-polyurethane coating that exhibits properties as foul release (FR) coating and allows organisms to be sloughed off by shear forces obtained at a ships cruising speed. In addition to exhibiting its fouling release behavior, these coatings have been demonstrated to provide improved durability to its coating surface.

Invention Premise

The exploration of numerous variables involved in the design of novel crosslinked siloxane-urethane coatings was carried out using combinatorial methods. Libraries of coatings that explored the effect of siloxane level, solvent, and their variables were prepared and characterized for their surface energy and pseudobarnacle pull-off adhesion. Stability of the coatings was determined by measuring the surface energy after aging the coatings in water and re-measuring the surface energy. Coatings compositions and formulations were identified that had stable hydrophobic surfaces and also had low pseudobarnacle adhesion values.


These self-stratifying coatings, phase separate into a low surface energy, low modulus top layer, with a tougher lower layer design. These systems are cross-linked, which results in the locking of the structure in place and resulting in a conformation that does not rearrange on exposure to water.


This technology is patented with fully preserved U.S. patent rights (issued patent 7,989,074) and is available for licensing/partnering opportunities.


Henry Nowak, Technology Manager

Technology Key

RFT, 197, RFT197 

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