Incorporation of Graphene Oxide into Polyurethane and acrylic polymers for enhancement against hydrolytic degradation

Hae Seong Kim

Chemistry Major

To protect from corrosion and barnacles, the hull of a ship is coated with paint.  Paint coating is a crucial protection: as a result, every year tons of paint is used to cover a great surface area of a ship as well as to reinforce its coating layers.  If the durability and lifespan of paint can be improved, then it will result in greater economic, time, and labor efficiency.

Polyurethane and acrylic polymers (acrylic paints) are the backbone of the paint industry.  During almost two years of working in Dr. Kranbuehl’s lab, Dr.Krabuehl has shown me the possibility of significant enhancement in hardness, solvent permeability and durability of polyurethane and acrylic polymers by incorporating them with less than 1% of Graphene Oxide.  By incorporating Graphene Oxide into polyurethane and acrylic polymers, a tougher material less permeable to water and thus more resistant to hydrolytic degradation is expected to be developed.