Alternatives to Critical Substances

Solvents based on NMP (N-methylpyrrolidones) and NEP (N-ethylpyrrolidones) are used frequently in the coatings industry. In the European guideline REACH, they are listed as being “of very high concern” because they are toxic to reproduction. The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) register in the U.S. also requires products that contain these toxic substances to be labeled accordingly. We therefore are continually working on replacing these substances with more harmless ones.

Last year, we managed to achieve this with a group of rheology additives for coatings. The new products are based on amide ester (ES) and amide ether (ET). Thus, they no longer have to be labeled. The development team consisting of researchers and application technologists received the in-house BYK Advance innovation prize for its new, versatile formulation.