Published On: Tue, Sep 15th, 2015

Henkel Adhesive Technologies ignites cooperation with star-up for novel technology in hydrophobic coatings

Henkel Adhesive Technologies has signed a joint development agreement with US-based DropWise Technologies Corp. to develop surface treatment solutions for new applications.

DropWise, found in 2014, holds the intellectual property of a novel method of hydrophobic coating applications. As said, the innovation will enable a durable polymer surface with unique properties that offers improved heat transfer.

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Henkel Adhesive Technologies ignites cooperation with star-up for novel technology in hydrophobic coatings

“Collaborating with promising start-ups that provide access to cutting-edge future technologies is an integral part of our innovation strategy,” said Mike Olosky, Corporate Senior Vice President and Global Head of Innovation and New Business Development, Henkel Adhesive Technologies.

The DropWise application process is based on an initiated chemical vapor deposition (iCVD) technique which allows the coating to be applied for OEM or retrofit applications.

Using just a very small amount of polymer precursors, a chemical reaction is carried out that covalently grafts an ultra-thin polymer film to any metal surface, such as stainless steel, titanium, copper, aluminum, and even polymers and ceramics.

One example use of DropWise’s hydrophobic coating is in condensing heat exchangers, where the technology increases the efficiency by eliminating the insulating film of liquid that typically builds up on the surface.

Target applications include industrial heat exchangers such as steam condensers in power plants, heating-ventilation and automotive air-conditioning as well as chemical processes.

Increasing the efficiency of these systems allows for reductions in fuel consumption, emissions and coolant water use, particularly for thermal power plants, which are the largest contributors to global emissions and second largest consumers of water, emphasized Henkel.

“We are very excited to be partnering with a global leader in metal surface treatment,” said Adam Paxson, CEO of DropWise. “Henkel’s deep technical expertise and strong track record of bringing new innovations to their customers will enable us to fast-track commercialization in key market areas.”

DropWise is commercializing the technology out of two laboratories at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).