Introduction legislation concerning the use of coatings with volatile organic components (VOC) drives coating manufacturers to focus on and increasingly produce water based coatings. Still, much research is needed to develop water based coatings of the same quality as their organic solvent based counterparts. Also the dynamics of the curing process of alkyd coatings is an important aspect for coating performance. Therefore, techniques to probe the spatial and temporal evolution of the coating structure are needed. Confocal Raman Microscopy (CRM) has been used to obtain chemical information spatially resolved in a transparent coating film. Recently, a nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) setup with a high magnetic field gradient has been developed to measure the spatial and temporal evolution of a drying coating film.
An advantage of this technique is the ability to perform depth profiling on any non transparent coating with a resolution of 5 µm. NMR probes the mobility of hydrogen nuclei which changes when a coating cures.
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