A Polymer for Non-Fouling or Fouling-Release Type Coatings (RFT-283)

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Invention Summary



Scientists at NDSU have recently invented a novel zwitterionic/amphiphilic pentablock copolymer coating that exhibits superior anti-fouling and fouling release properties.

The invention combines the low surface energy of polydimethyl siloxane (PDMS) and the protein resistance properties of both zwitterionic and amphiphilic compounds.

Since the amphiphilic substance has both hydrophobic and hydrophilic moieties on one compound, the polymer forms nanoscale heterogeneities, creating a surface topography that is unsuitable for the proliferation and adsorption of proteins and marine micro-foulers. 


  • Exhibit superior anti-fouling and fouling release properties due to unique surface topology
  • Pseudo-barnacle measurement demonstrates a weak adhesion at surface of the coatings
  • High water contact angle values indicates a surface enriched with polydimethyl siloxane (PDMS). 

Invention Premise

This invention is directed toward the synthesis of a novel amphiphilic triblock copolymer of polydimethyl siloxane  (PDMS) and polyethylene glycol, the synthesis of a novel initiator for atom transfer radical polymerization (ATRP), and the formation of a novel pentablock copolymer through the polymerization of SBMA ([2-(Methacryloyloxy) ethyl] dimethyl-(3-sulfopropyl) ammonium hydroxide), using the novel triblock initiator. 

The synthesis is carried out in several steps and the pentablock copolymers are incorporated into a polyurethane coating formulation. 


This technology is the subject of issued US Patent No. 8,629,210 and is available for licensing and partnering opportunities.


Henry Nowak, Technology Manager

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