Dry de­coat­ing of re­silient floor­ings with non-ther­mal at­mo­spher­ic pres­sure plas­mas

IGF 18035 BG

The coat­ing ap­plied on the sur­face of elas­tic floor­ings cur­rent­ly is based on poly­mers which re­duce ad­he­sion of soils and make clean­ing much eas­i­er. Es­pe­cial­ly for areas of heavy use, basic clean­ing is nec­es­sary on a reg­u­lar basis, where the old coat­ing has to be re­moved com­plete­ly and a new coat­ing is ap­plied to ob­tain op­ti­cal­ly per­fect floor­ing ap­pear­ance again. Basic clean­ing usu­al­ly is achieved by use of large amounts of water and chem­i­cals, which re­sults in high water and chem­i­cal con­sump­tion val­ues, high labor costs and long dry­ing du­ra­tion.

There­fore, cur­rent­ly a re­search pro­ject is car­ried out by wfk-Clean­ing Tech­nol­o­gy In­sti­tute in Krefeld in col­lab­o­ra­tion with Forschungsin­sti­tut für Leder und Kun­st­stoff­bah­nen in Freiberg to over­come these dis­ad­van­tages. In the frame of the pro­ject, a clean­ing pro­cess to per­form basic clean­ing of elas­tic floor­ings by means of at­mo­spher­ic-pres­sure plas­ma is de­vel­oped. The pro­cess needs no water and chem­i­cals for clean­ing and con­se­quent­ly no long dry­ing du­ra­tion be­tween basic clean­ing and re-coat­ing is nec­es­sary. Fi­nal­ly, the new pro­cess leads to in­creased area per­for­mance and ad­di­tion­al­ly the floor­ings are us­able short­ly after basic clean­ing pro­cess.

Dur­ing the first work­ing pack­age of the re­search pro­ject, new coat­ings were de­vel­oped, that are suit­able for ap­pli­ca­tion of at­mo­spher­ic-pres­sure plas­mas. One the one hand, the prop­er­ties of these coat­ings have to be ad­just­ed in a way, that suf­fi­cient ad­he­sion to the elas­tic floor­ing is achieved. On the other hand, the coat­ing should be eas­i­ly re­moved by plas­ma treat­ment. This is reached by de­vel­op­ment of a two layer coat­ing.

The bot­tom layer con­tains small ho­mo­ge­neous­ly dis­tribut­ed par­ti­cles, so called “in­tu­mes­cence par­ti­cles”, which are small liq­uid filled hol­low spheres. Dur­ing plas­ma treat­ment, the liq­uid in­side the hol­low spheres evap­o­rates and the spheres ex­pand strong­ly. This leads to break­ing or “blast­ing” of the com­plete coat­ing be­cause of ex­ten­sive re­duc­tion of the ad­he­sion to the floor­ing.

To im­prove the “blast­ing” of the bot­tom layer, the upper layer of the new coat­ing is mod­i­fied to allow very good heat con­duc­tion to the lower layer. Con­se­quent­ly, the heat flow – gen­er­at­ed by plas­ma – is con­duct­ed through the upper into the lower layer. Con­se­quent­ly, the de­sired in­ter­ac­tion be­tween plas­ma heat and in­tu­mes­cence par­ti­cles is op­ti­mized.

At wfk-in­sti­tute, coat­ings mod­i­fied with in­tu­mes­cence media were de­vel­oped which are suit­able for use of at­mo­spher­ic- pres­sure plas­ma.

The re­sults show, that ef­fi­cient, com­plete de-coat­ing can be achieved with­out vis­i­ble dam­age to var­i­ous floor­ing ma­te­ri­als (rub­ber, PVC, linoleum) by op­ti­mum set­tings of the plas­ma sys­tem. Fur­ther­more, it was shown that even after re­peat­ed ap­pli­ca­tion and re­moval of the coat­ing, the de­sired ef­fect is achieved.

In ad­di­tion, the be­hav­ior of the new resp. mod­i­fied coat­ing on var­i­ous elas­tic floor­ings is in­ves­ti­gat­ed. This in­cludes the ex­am­i­na­tion of prop­er­ties like ad­he­sion, gloss or trans­paren­cy of the mod­i­fied coat­ing. Re­sults show that gloss and trans­paren­cy of the mod­i­fied coat­ing are com­pa­ra­ble to com­mer­cial avail­able coat­ings. Cur­rent­ly, the ad­he­sion force of the mod­i­fied coat­ing is op­ti­mized.

Par­al­lel to the on­go­ing op­ti­miza­tion of the ad­he­sion of the mod­i­fied coat­ing, a con­cept for a mo­bile plas­ma clean­ing de­vice for de-coat­ing of the mod­i­fied coat­ing is de­vel­oped. The re­sults are used for de­vel­op­ment of an ex­per­i­men­tal model for plas­ma based dry basic clean­ing.

The research report is available on request from FRT.

The IGF-pro­ject IGF 18035 BG of the re­search as­so­ci­a­tion Europäische Forschungs­ge­mein­schaft Reini­gungs- und Hy­gien­etech­nolo­gie e.V., Cam­pus Ficht­en­hain 11, 47807 Krefeld, was sup­port­ed with­in the fund­ing pro­gram „In­dus­trielle Gemein­schafts­forschung und -en­twick­lung (IGF)“ by the Fed­er­al Min­istry of Eco­nom­ic Af­fairs and Cli­mate Ac­tion due to a de­ci­sion of the Ger­man Par­lia­ment.