Polymer coating is widely used as a protective layer in various fields such as surface anti-corrosion, anti-penetration and anti-impact. How to enhance the mechanical properties of coatings such as impact resistance is important but challenging, under the condition of the existing materials systems and processes.
Inspired by natural organisms’ bottom-up fabrication and energy dissipation mechanisms, we considered four critical factors in material design (chemical composition, nano/microstructure, architecture and manufacturing techniques). We developed a self-wrinkled photo-curing coating, comprising a microphase-separated structure with a gradient cross-linked architecture, as protective materials. The self-wrinkled surface morphology induced by photo-polymerization and the intrinsic gradient architecture generated by gradient cross-linked polymer networks are critical factors for energy dissipation and impact resistance of the cured coating, providing mechanically enhanced characteristics, which was verified both theoretically and experimentally.
Comparing with the highly sophisticated tools, i.e., molding, nano-/micro-imprinting, laser ablation and soft lithography, this self-wrinkled coating was fabricated through the same one-step approach as the conventional photo-curing coating, opening up new possibilities for photo-curing coatings.
See the article:
Jin Li, Xiaoliang Zhang, Zhilong Su, Tiantian Li, Zehong Wang, Shilong Dong, Fan Xu, Xiaodong Ma, Jie Yin, Xuesong Jiang. Self-wrinkling coating for impact resistance and mechanical enhancement. Science Bulletin, 2023, 68(19): 2200-2209