Tomorrow’s winners in the protective coatings field will be companies that can juggle “extreme cost sensitivities and increasing environmental and regulatory considerations,” according to new-technology watcher Lux Research Inc.
And three emerging coatings makers that appear well on their way to doing so are Modumetal, MesoCoat and Nanogate, says the Boston-based research company.
|“Nanogate tops polymer coating developers,” Lux Research said of the German-based nanomaterials company.|
“The protective coatings market continues to be driven by extreme cost sensitivities and increasing environmental and regulatory considerations, even though its products have great potential to reduce inefficiency and degradation of industrial equipment caused by friction, corrosion and fouling,” according to “Fighting Corrosion, Friction, and Fouling: The Power of Protective Coatings,” newly released by the company’s Advanced Materials Intelligence service.
As the title suggests, the report asserts a coatings-focused approach to addressing the inefficiency and materials degradation caused by friction, corrosion and fouling.
“Users must strike the right balance between performance concerns along with industry factors, including cost tolerance, regulatory drivers, throughput, volume, and qualification timelines,” said Ross Kozarsky, a Lux Research analyst and lead author of the report.
“While a variety of other approaches exist, using coatings to address these problems builds resistance into the equipment itself and can limit consumables, maintenance, and environmental impact.”
Rating Materials Developers
With that premise, Lux rated materials developers, to see which “are best positioned to prosper in the current market environment.”
To do so, the company positioned specialists in novel coating materials, manufacturing methods, and deposition processes on what it calls “the Lux Innovation Grid”; mapped technologies onto industry needs using its “Technology-Application Heat Map”; and developed “a strategic playbook that allows players to maximize the economic potential of their core technologies.”
|MesoCoat makes marine coatings for decks, structures, tankers and carriers.|
The Innovation Grid is a tool for analyzing companies on their technical value and business execution. Companies that are strong on both axes reach the “Dominant” quadrant. Lux also assessed each company’s maturity and other factors.
3 Winners and a Runner-Up
The company’s conclusions:
• “MesoCoat rises as the chrome alternative option.” MesoCoat, of Euclid, OH, is a fast-growing surface engineering company that provides metal protection and repair through its “long life” thermal spray coating and “high speed” metallurgical cladding technologies.
Lux cited MesoCoat for its “technical potential—thermally sprayed nanocomposite ceramic-metallic (cermet) coatings and metal claddings as alternatives to toxic chrome – combined with its significant business progress over the past year, including a deal with Petrobras.”
• “Nanogate tops polymer coating developers,” Lux said of the German-based nanomaterials company. “With an IP chest fortified by the acquisition of Gesellschaft für Oberflächentechnik, sol-gel polymer coating developer Nanogate Technologies beats the competition on both technical value and business execution. Its partnerships with Clariant, Dow Corning, Bosch and GEA Air Treatment have helped make it a formidable player.”
• “Modumetal joins Integran [Technologies Inc.] in making the electroplated metals space sizzle.”
Modumetal is a nanolaminated alloy that is stronger and lighter than steel. “Whether it’s oil and gas facilities, maritime materials or power facilities, Modumetal can provide the critical edge to reduce corrosion and repair,” the Seattle-based company says on its site. “Its unique process allows for even greater application of coatings in places like oil and gas pipelines, pulp and paper industries and infrastructure.”
In the past year, Lux notes, Modumetal has begun a joint venture with Steel Dynamics, added Siemens as a customer, and ramped up a full production line.
Lux also gave a nod to Sweden-based I-Tech, which “is developing a new coating based on medetomidine—best known for its use as an animal sedative, but also offering 300 times the anti-fouling activity of incumbent cuprous oxide paints.”
Lux called I-Tech “an intriguing ‘high-potential’ candidate” in the antifouling industry, adding that its business execution fell short of its high technical value score.