Nano-science and nano-technology have been extensively explored to develop functional and smart coating systems. In this context, it is important to investigate novel characterisation methodologies for surface feature measurement and evaluation of diverse coating systems at nano and micrometrical scales which cannot be implemented by conventional tests. In this study, nano-indentation test have been carried out to characterise the environmental degradation of a polymer coating on a building material substrate. Multiple locations were selected for nano-indention for analysis and evaluation. It has shown that the coating weathering led to a reduction in deformation depth and an increase of hardness and modulus. Furthermore, the weathering resulted in surface quality degradation, which was characterised by hugely reduced surface homogeneity in terms of standard deviations in deformation, hardness and modulus. The coating degradations were also characterised by surface roughness measurement by profilometry. There were significant differences in surface roughness at the micrometrical scale for coatings with varying environmental degradations. They were quantified in terms of surface roughness statistics. The micro morphologies of the coating were observed by SEM which showed a good agreement with results from nano-indentation test and surface roughness measurement. This study demonstrates that nano-indentation test and surface roughness measurement are viable methodologies to evaluate specialised polymer coating systems and to characterise their degradations at the nano and micrometrical scales.
|Number of pages||6|
|Journal||Polymer Degradation and Stability|
|Publication status||Published - May 2011|