No.1: The role of paint

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Summary Note

The main functions of paint are to protect the coated object from deterioration and to enhance its appearance. Paints that have additional functions are known as functional coatings. 

1. Protection and Aesthetics

Paint has two main functions: “protection” and “aesthetics.” First, paint plays a role in “protection” by preventing the deterioration of the coated object due to factors like rust, corrosion, UV radiation, and weathering. Additionally, it enhances the appearance of the object by adding color, gloss, and a sense of luster, providing an “aesthetic” aspect. Therefore, paint is not an independent entity but is applied to various products such as automobiles, appliances, ships, bridges, and buildings to protect them from degradation and enhance their visual appeal. In contrast, inks and paints serve different purposes, such as conveying information and expressing emotions, and are used in different applications. 

2. Functions of Functional Coatings

In recent years, “functional coatings” with additional functions beyond the basic “protection and aesthetics” have emerged. These coatings incorporate different functions, such as “heat-resistant paint,” and their names indicate the specific functions they offer. 

Regarding protection, the factors contributing to degradation vary depending on the material of the substrate. Table 1-1 illustrates the relationship between the material of the coated object, degradation phenomena, and degradation factors. Paint prevents these degradation factors from directly contacting the coated object or suppresses the amount and speed at which they reach the surface of the coated object. 

  Table 1-1: Deterioration Phenomena and Factors in Coated Objects 
Coated Object (Substrate) Deterioration Phenomenon – Deterioration Factors 
Metal Oxidation (Rust, Corrosion) Water, Oxygen, Corrosive Substances (Chlorine Ions, Acids, Alkalis)
Concrete Alkali Aggregate Reaction
Mortar Frost Damage Water, Carbon Dioxide
Cement Neutralization (Corrosion of Reinforcement Bars) Water, Carbon Dioxide
Stone Salt Damage (Corrosion of Reinforcement Bars) Water, Carbon Dioxide
Wood Decay Fungi, Insects, UV Radiation, Wind and Rain
Plastic Embrittlement, Whitening UV Radiation




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