The CoatingsTech article, “Roof Coatings: Cool Technology Is a Hot Topic,” explains how Secretary of Energy Steven Chu has juiced the market for cool roofs, reviews the technology and growth of cool-roof coatings, and describes recent developments in coating materials for this application
Chu’s strong remarks supporting cool-roof coatings came in his speech at the St. James Palace Nobel Laureate Symposium in London on May 9 this year. Chu specifically mentioned the need to use cool-roof coatings and cited the work of colleagues at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, who calculated that billions of tons of CO2 could be saved by lightening the color of surfaces such as roofs.
Municipalities, states, and other government agencies have been energized by Chu’s remarks, the article says, and are planning or already deploying this technology. The potential to acquire additional LEED credits for cool-roof coatings are also cited as stimulating the market, which is said to be approximately $500 million in size and growing at about 4% per year.
The resin technologies for cool-roof coatings include acrylics, urethanes, silicones, fluoropolymers, and epoxies. The article describes new product offerings from several companies. New acrylic products are being developed by Dow Construction Chemicals for good performance in high humidity and uncertain weather, as well as one for application over thermoplastic polyolefin roofing.
BaySystems has developed acrylics to maximize reflectivity and the durability of the coating’s whiteness. Combinations of biocides and mildewcides help minimize biocontamination of these coatings.
Other notable developments include the aqueous PDVF coatings of Arkema, increasingly reflective IR pigments from Ferro, and easily dispersed IR pigments from Shepherd Color. Also, the article reports that United Environment & Energy is developing a smart roof coating that responds to changes in temperature—reflecting light at higher temperatures and transmitting light at lower temperatures.
The article appeared in the August issue of CoatingsTech magazine (www.paint.org).