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PPG Industries received a $1.5 million award in January from the federal government’s Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP) to develop a CARC powder coating for use on military vehicles and support equipment.
Already qualified by the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) as a producer of powder primer for CARC systems, PPG will work with ARL to develop a powder topcoat that will meet military standards for ultraviolet durability, matte finish and resistance to chemical agents.
“PPG has developed proprietary processing and resin-synthesis capabilities for powder coatings that we believe will support development of powder CARCs meeting the MIL-PRF-32348 specification,” says Lawrence Fitzgerald, PPG senior scientist.
John Escarsega, who leads ARL’s Organic Coatings Team within its Weapons and Materials Research Directorate, says developing a CARC powder topcoat will benefit both the DoD and commercial enterprises because of inherent program environmental health and safety standards.
“Combining PPG’s coatings expertise with the critical design requirements of the U.S. Army makes this partnership ideal,” Escarsega says.
Powder coatings are attractive to SERDP because they are safer to apply than many liquid alternatives, with no emission of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) or hazardous air pollutants (HAPs). Plus, the ability to reuse overspray yields a nearly-100-percent utilization rate, so they generate little or no waste.
SERDP is the DoD’s environmental research and development program, planned and executed in partnership with the Department of Energy and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.