AkzoNobel Partners with AI Coatings Company
Global coatings company AkzoNobel has announced that its powder coatings business will be partnering with coating automation company coatingAI to use artificial intelligence to help improve the coatings application process.
According to a release from AkzoNobel, the technology known as Flightpath will help in the optimization of equipment settings to reduce defects and overspray and improve powder consumption.
About the Partnership
“We’re delighted to team up with coatingAI and strengthen our technical service capabilities,” said Remco Maassen van den Brink, Marketing Director of AkzoNobel’s Powder Coatings business.
“We proactively look for ways to support customers in becoming more sustainable in their operations and this will significantly improve our ability to help them get better results—while contributing to our own ambition of halving carbon emissions across the value chain by 2030.”
The software can reportedly aid customers in adjusting equipment settings like gun motion to help achieve consistent coverage with fewer flaws due to the AI-powered recommendations.
The release adds that the software does not need complex integration and, as conditions change, it can alter its recommended parameters.
The AI software has reportedly been in development for two years and is now part of an exclusivity agreement with AkzoNobel. The two reportedly partnered up after AkzoNobel’s Paint the Future start-up challenge in 2021.
“Collaborating with a startup like coatingAI—who are pushing boundaries to transform the coatings industry—means we can accelerate our own powder revolution and provide services like no other,” added Maassen van den Brink.
“It’s the latest example of how we constantly innovate and look for new ways to offer customers the most progressive and sustainable solutions.”
Other AkzoNobel News
In October, AkzoNobel’s Aerospace Coatings segment announced that it had acquired a stake in aircraft maintenance and inspection company Donecle, for the use of its drone inspection technology.
According to AkzoNobel’s release, Donecle’s drone technology for aircraft inspections was important to the company’s Aerofleet Coatings Management service, helping airline operators tweak their aerospace coatings replacement and maintenance schedules for individual aircrafts.
The release added that Donecle’s technology was originally created to increase the efficiency of aircraft general visual inspections, including the detection and identification of lightning strikes.
The technology was reportedly developed to detect paint flaws, scratches and other coatings issues such as rivet rash. The findings were reportedly studied to find the status of the coating, as well as whether and when a new coating is required.
Donecle’s drones reportedly fly in a set grid over the plane's surface, taking up to 1,000 HD photos. Then photos are reportedly run through Donecle’s bespoke machine learning algorithm, based on a two-stage Deep Neural Network, to find issues on a surface.
AkzoNobel stated that the drones can reach parts of an aircraft quicker than a person can, while additional patented laser positioning technology makes the flights fully automated. Navigation sensors also reportedly enable the drone to fly and land safely.
Another release from Donecle stated that the €5.6 million (about $5.8 million), provided by AkzoNobel and one other investor for the partnership, would help with the expansion of Donecle’s marketing activities and growth in production rates. The money received also reportedly helped speed up ongoing qualification programs with aircraft manufacturers.
Donecle stated that it expected the funding to aid in extending its scope to include new developments like artificial intelligence for automatic detection and classification and the Iris dentCHECK for 3D measurement for different types of damage.